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EU budget requires accountability

As the European Union seeks for ways to improve how it spends its budget - currently at 129 billion euros - Transparency International (TI) today recommended that EU institutions and member states increase transparency and accountability.

“The current review of the EU budget provides a unique opportunity for a systematic scrutiny of all aspects of EU spending, including the Structural Fund”, said Jana Mittermaier, Head of the TI Brussels Office. As part of its recommendations submitted today to the EU Budget review process, TI suggests that each member state should take over more responsibility for the funds spent within its territory, among other solutions.

TI’s recommendations address three challenges: reducing complexity, addressing inherent risks, and overhauling management and control arrangements at EU level. The most effective means for improving transparency and accountability in EU spending are:

  • to systemically publish the recipients of EU funds
  • to set proper financial incentives (financial sanctions, blacklisting, debarment from public contracts) for those who do not comply with the rules
  • to increase accountability for spending under shared management which accounts for over 80 % of EU spending, by better delineating the obligations of the Commission and the Member States

“The EU needs to increase the transparency and accountability in its spending not only for legal reasons, but also in order to strengthen the trust of European citizens in European institutions”, added Mittermaier.

Transparency International is the global civil society organisation leading the fight against corruption with national chapters in almost every EU member state, EU accession candidate and potential candidate country.

Download TI’s EU Budget Review recommendations here.


To read TI’s recommendations to the EU budget review please see:

For any press enquiries please contact

In Brussels
Jana Mittermaier
T: +32 2 504 9061
E: [email protected]

In Berlin:
Gypsy Guillén Kaiser
T: +49 30 343820662
E: [email protected]