Tuesday, October 24, 2006

Sweden tops new CAP transparency index

On the day when the European Court of Auditors has for the twelfth year running refused sign off the European Union’s annual budget because of concerns about fraud and poor controls, farmsubsidy.org is launching a new Common Agricultural Policy transparency index. The index is based on a comprehensive scorecard that rates all member states according to whether they have released data on who gets what from the EU’s Common Agricultural Policy (CAP). Sweden tops the index with a score of 95%, followed by Denmark (91%) and Slovenia (87%). So far twelve EU member states have released data to farmsubsidy.org.

Criticising poor controls in the EU budget, the Court of Auditors said that 'Beneficiaries — farmers, local authorities, project managers — claim more than they have the right to claim'. Most of the problems occur with payments made by member states not by Brussels, because 76% of EU payments are delegated to member states.

Jack Thurston, co-founder of farmsubsidy.org said:

'Transparency is a guard against fraud and maladministration and a way of reconnecting citizens with their governments. Transparency leads to more legimate and effective policy-making. We hope this scorecard will be used to praise the few EU member states who have embraced transparency and shame the many who continue to hide farm subsidies behind a veil of secrecy. All European citizens pay for farm subsidies, they should have a right to know who gets what - and why.'

Read the CAP Transparency Index report:

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