Debate on European structural funds

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Members of the Finance Committee called for a "wholesale review" of the Welsh European Funding Office (Wefo) during a debate on their report on European funding on 20 February 2013.

The committee's report states that it's difficult to pinpoint what effect European spending is having in Wales, even though there are efficient distribution systems in place.

The committee called on the government to outline their spending plans for the coming round of European spending as well as the role of Wefo in monitoring the work.

Of the 16 recommendations made by the Committee, 13 were accepted either in full or at least in principle.

"The committee welcomes the Welsh government's intention to review the role of the Welsh European Funding Office," said Jocelyn Davies, Chair of the Finance Committee.

"Such a move is important as this latest round of European funding is due to end in 2013 and negotiations among member states over the future EU budget have just begun.

"Wales must be able to demonstrate how it is using the funding wisely and effectively."

Responding to the debate, Deputy Europe Minister Alun Davies expressed his disappointment at the criticisms of the government's programs in Wales claiming his European counterparts hold Welsh projects in high regard.

He said that EU projects have already helped 46,400 people into work, supported over 10,000 businesses and helped to create almost 4,475 new enterprises and 16,400 jobs during very difficult economic times.

"Wales can be proud of its achievements so far, where we have been recognised by the European Commission as a region of excellence and innovation in the way European funds are deployed, laying the foundations for sustainable growth and jobs for the future.

"We will continue to review the effectiveness of our programmes, ensuring they contribute to our work in transforming the economy of our country."

The motion was unanimously agreed.

Darllenwch hwn yn Gymraeg

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