The Commission’s post-programme surveillance applies to Member States exiting an adjustment programme and aims to ensure that they have the capacity to repay the financial assistance provided. The European Court of Auditors has started work on an audit examining the design, implementation and effectiveness of post-programme surveillance for the five Member States (Ireland, Portugal, Spain, Cyprus and Greece) that received financial support after the 2008 financial crisis. The audit will look at whether the Commission took relevant measures where needed to enable these Member States to maintain a sound economic and financial position, and whether it provided creditors with assurance regarding repayment capacity.
All EU Member States are normally subject to the standard surveillance for policy coordination under the European Semester. If, however, a Member State experiences serious financial difficulties, it can apply for a financial assistance programme. After the 2008 financial crisis, this was the case for Ireland, Portugal, Spain, Cyprus and Greece.
At the end of a financial support programme, the Member State is placed under post-programme surveillance (PPS), which is implemented alongside the European Semester. Its aim is to ensure that Member States are able to repay the financial assistance granted, while continually assessing their economic, fiscal and financial situation and identifying any risks to medium-term viability.
“Now that the global economy is being severely impacted by the COVID-19 pandemic, it is important to know if the pillars of the EU’s economic and financial architecture are solid and effective”, said Alex Brenninkmeijer, the member of the European Court of Auditors responsible for the audit. “Our audit will also consider the suitability of post-programme surveillance as a monitoring tool for the economic recovery fund currently under discussion”.
Press Release: Auditors to examine post-programme surveillance for Member States that received financial assistance after 2008 crisis