Written by Marin Mileusnic.
The Next Generation EU (NGEU) recovery instrument and its centrepiece, the Recovery and Resilience Facility (RRF), are the main EU-level tools to help the Member States recover from the socio-economic fallout caused by the COVID-19 crisis and address structural challenges. Implementing the RRF in a transparent manner is particularly important for the overall success of NGEU, all the more so due to the latter’s large volume, result-based spending model and limited implementation period. This briefing discusses efforts to ensure the transparency of RRF implementation at both EU and national levels of governance.
At the EU level, the European Commission engages in recovery and resilience dialogues with the European Parliament; publishes implementation reports; and updates the RRF Scoreboard with information on completed milestones and targets set in the individual national recovery and resilience plans (NRRPs), as well as on the disbursement of funds to the Member States.
The Parliament’s involvement is vital for ensuring transparency and democratic scrutiny of the RRF implementation process. At the national level, Member States report on NRRP implementation to their national parliaments. As Member States have a primary role in protecting EU financial interests, timely and comprehensive reporting on their part is crucial, as it has the potential to contribute to higher accountability and transparency standards. These, combined with timely disclosure of information at the EU level, play a role in strengthening the added value of the Facility.
To check performance in regard to the regularity and comprehensiveness of national-level reporting, this briefing focuses on a selection of eight Member States – Spain, Italy, France, Portugal, Slovenia, Ireland, Croatia and Romania. In addition, it also sheds light on the role of the informal expert group, composed of Member States’ authorities and Commission representatives, in the exchange of views on RRF implementation. The group publishes the agendas and minutes of its meetings, thereby introducing a novel, hybrid way of promoting transparency in implementation.
Read the complete briefing on ‘Transparency in the implementation of the Recovery and Resilience Facility‘ in the Think Tank pages of the European Parliament.