A total of € 128.2 million of EU farm money unduly spent by Member States is to be claimed back, following a decision adopted last Friday by the European Commission.
The money will be recovered because of inadequate control procedures or non-compliance with EU rules on agricultural expenditure. Member States are responsible for paying out and checking expenditure under the Common Agricultural Policy (CAP), and the Commission is required to ensure that Member States have made correct use of the funds.
"This is a crucial process in ensuring that CAP money is used properly and that all unduly spent amounts are recovered," said Mariann Fischer Boel, commissioner for agriculture and rural development.
"We have made enormous progress over recent years in improving controls and I am determined that these efforts will continue in the future."
Main financial corrections
Under this latest decision, the 21st since the 1995 reform of the system for recovering unduly spent CAP money, funds will be recovered from Belgium, Germany, Spain, Finland, France, Italy, Netherlands, Portugal, Sweden and the United Kingdom.
The most significant individual corrections include € 32.07 million charged to France for non-compliance with producers organisations recognition criteria, inadequate quantity and quality controls, over-estimated aid and non-application of sanctions for compensatory aid for bananas.
Over € 30 million is also being charged to Italy for non-application of penalties and inadequate checks on products withdrawn in the fruits and vegetables sector, while another € 30 million will be taken off Italy for non-compliance with payment deadlines in various sectors.
Full details of the recoveries by Member State and by sector are given in the tables below.