OLAF reform: Combining forces to protect European taxpayers' money
The European Parliament, meeting today in plenary session in Strasbourg, has adopted a reform of OLAF, the EU Anti-Fraud Office, to enhance its cooperation with the newly created European Public Prosecutor's Office, by regulating the exchange of information and ensuring complementarity of action and non-duplication of survey work. The revision also aims to define more precisely the tools available to OLAF to carry out administrative investigations in order to increase their effectiveness. This includes controls and checks, access to bank account information, and anti-fraud tools.
ALDE spokesperson on this reform in the Budgetary Control Committee (CONT), Wolf KLINZ (FDP, Germany) commented: « With the establishment of the European Public Prosecutor's Office (EPPO)focussing on criminal investigations, it was essential to adapt the regulation of the European Anti-Fraud Office (OLAF) to ensure both institutions can work smoothly hand-in-hand on their joint competence: protecting the EU's financial interests. The Commission took the opportunity to also improve the effectiveness of OLAF and to simplify some provisions. ALDE supported the Commission in this goal and we successfully introduced the creation of a complaints mechanism and a controller for procedural guarantees within OLAF. We also paved the way for joint revisions, which may one day lead to a merging of the two institutions».