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EC Grants and Loans: North East Region

Volume 459: debated on Thursday 3 May 2007

To ask the Secretary of State for Communities and Local Government which Objective 2 schemes in the North East were held to be deficient in the management of expenditure, resulting in the suspension by the European Commission of all European Regional Development Fund payments to the UK. (135065)

[holding answer 2 May 2007]: The European Commission is holding back the reimbursement of some expenditure by the Government on European Regional Development Fund 2000-06 programmes in some regions in England, including the North East, not across the whole of the UK. The European Commission has required that more on site checks of projects funded from the European Regional Development Fund are carried out by the Government Office for the North East to ensure that projects are complying with particular European Commission requirements. The European Commission has not referred to specific projects in the North East programme in this regard. The Government Office for the North East has put in place a robust action plan to deal with the issues and has achieved targets for on site checks set for the end of March. Discussions are continuing with the Commission with a view to getting expenditure reimbursed as soon as possible.