Newsletter – August 2020

The ninth Newsletter of the Jean Monnet Chair "EU Budgetary Governance and Audit" focuses on the significant development that took place during the second quarter of 2020, and especially the impact of the COVID - 19 pandemic on the negotiations between the Member States of the EU with regard to the establishment of an integrated scheme to tackle the consequences of the pandemic, called “Next Generation EU”, as well as the adoption of the EU’s Multiannual Financial Framework for the period 2021 – 2027. The main points of the agreement reached in July 2020 are being highlighted, with particular emphasis on the categories of expenditure, the nature of the payments to be made, the introduction of new own resources for the EU and the form of the conditionality for the protection of the rule of law. Furthermore, the Newsletter discusses two Audit Previews presented by the European Court of Auditors on its forthcoming audits regarding the system for migrant returns and readmission to third countries probed by EU and the post-programme surveillance scheme for the Member States that received financial assistance after the 2008 economic crisis. Following these, the Newsletter includes the ECA’s Opinion no 4/2020 on the proposed REACT-EU regulation and the proposed amendements for the Common Provisions Regulation governing the ESI funds, in order to improve those funds’ effectiveness with regard to addressing the impact of the COVID-19 pandemic. The Newsletter also highlights the ECA’s Opinion no 5/2020 on the Commission’s proposals for a Regulation establishing the Just Transition Fund as a key-financial instrument for supporting the Member States’ efforts for a transition to a climate-neutral economy by 2050. Moreover, the Newsletter makes a detailed reference to the ECA’s Review no 2/2020 on Law-making in the European Union after almost 20 years of implementing and evolving the Better Regulation strategy of the Union, noting the relevant challenges for the Union such as the timely and quality documentation of legislative initiatives, the simplification of EU legislation and the transparency of the legislative process. Finally, with regard to the Chairs’ activities, the Newsletter refers to the Chair’s new three volume book, which was published, in July 2020, by the Publications of the University of Macedonia, entitled "Audit Bases of Soundness in EU Budgetary Governance". It also includes information on the webinar organized, in July 2020, by the Chair and the Association of Certified Fraud Examiners (ACFE) on Audit and Combating Fraud in the EU, as well as the Chair’s Notebooks which have been published recently.

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