Susana SOLÍS (Ciudadanos, Spain) and Eva POPTCHEVA (Ciudadanos, Spain) took part this week in a mission of the Parliamentary Committee on Budgetary Control (CONT) to Spain to verify that the Madrid government had complied with the various prescriptions agreed by the EU Institutions to commit the funds of the Recovery and Resilience Facility, of which Spain was the first beneficiary country. At the end of this visit, the two members of Renew Europe made the following statement.
"The Recovery and Resilience Facility is one of the greatest achievements of European solidarity, but we need to ensure that the funds are used to the greatest benefit of European citizens, SMEs, and to build transformative projects in all Member States.
We are happy to see that the transparency system is finally operative, although the available information indicates technical problems. Regional governments are often facing double workloads. Most worrying of all, the data is not publicly available. Hence, we cannot know who is receiving the funds, execution rates, and the impact on economic growth.
In the same line, we have heard over and over the difficulties for SMEs, and final beneficiaries to access funds due to the unacceptable bureaucracy linked to these funds. We need to reduce all red tape and bottlenecks to untap the potential of Spanish and European enterprises. We should use the Addenda to introduce more effective implementation measures.
In parallel to the deployment of the funds, we are happy to see that the Commission has restated the importance of reforms in the Recovery plans through the recently published methodology for partial disbursements. In Spain, there are still crucial reforms pending such as the pension and tax reforms. For the former, the Government was not able to present a convincing proposal to the members of the mission, which is concerning given that it is one of the milestones to be evaluated for the next disbursement to Spain. Further, concerns on the recent modifications of the Spanish criminal code regarding the misuse of public funds remain"