Kinnock asks for faster changes on EC reforms

18 Oct 01
European Commission vice-president Neil Kinnock has called on the European Parliament and the European Union's Council of Ministers to introduce legislation quickly to put in place his reform proposals.

19 October 2001

Kinnock has been charged with reviewing financial controls in the Commission following a critical report in 1999 on fraud and mismanagement that led to the resignation of all 20 European Commissioners.

His proposals on personnel policy have been agreed with staff representatives and are due to be finalised on October 30.

Giving the inaugural Sunningdale Accountability Lecture on October 15, the former leader of the Labour Party said that 'ready assistance' should be provided by the Parliament and the Council to amend legislation.

'If for any reason it isn't, they will then have the task of explaining to the European public why they will not facilitate the fulfilment of the clear reform mandate which they gave to the commission in 1999,' he said.

'They are the representative bodies that rightly and insistently called for profound reform. They must comprehend the link between high standards of financial management and well-managed and motivated staff.'

Kinnock added that his proposals on internal financial systems also required amendments to European regulations. But this was still being considered by the Council of Ministers.

'They have had our proposals for 13 months – the wheels of God are jet-propelled in comparison,' he said.


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