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Friday, 12 May 2006

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Nicholas Newman

For the last eleven years we have grown used to the news headlines ‘Auditors reject EU accounts again’ or ‘EU accounts fail to pass muster.’ Basically, Euro-sceptics like to blame Brussels for this problem, because the European Court of Auditors has refused to sign off the Europe’s books again. In fact much of the blame should be addressed closer to home, since over 80% of EU spending is conducted by national and regional authorities. Brussels, itself has done much to improve, within its remit, its standards of accountancy and governance, but it is national governments that have resisted the significant reforms required to resolve this issue.

Putting it bluntly, unless member states are prepared to surrender parts of their sovereignty to Brussels, on their spending of European taxpayer’s money, accountancy reforms will only have a marginal affect on improving the accountability of how the EU budget is spent in member states.

see http://www.oxfordprospect.co.uk/EU ACCONTS.htm

kiki

The current crisis in the Middle East shows how much a unified Europe is needed in the world to make sure that there is a power able to push the United States to action when it is not willing to act. My fear is that because of the political situation, which exists in countries such as France, Britain and to some extent Germany, Europe will not become a priority for European leader until an earth-shattering event happen which changes the political scene and convinces leaders that Europe is not obsolete, but vital to the "grandeur" of their nations.

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