OLAF report: Romania ranked first on number of EU fund embezzlement cases in 2019

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Romania is the country where the European Anti-Fraud Office (OLAF) concluded the most numerous number of investigations on EU fund embezzlement last year. More than 10% of the total 100 files regard frauds with EU money in our country, according to the 2019 OLAF report.

Last year, OLAF investigated how EU funds have been spent in 42 countries, concluding 100 files overall. 11 of them (over one tenth) refer only to European money spent in Romania.

At the same time, 9 in those 11 files have been concluded with recommendations from OLAF.

Romania is mentioned in several chapters regarding EU fund embezzlement: aquaculture farms in areas where there is no water, EU funds for preventing forest fires or funds for the waste water management.

Last year, OLAF concluded 181 investigations, issuing 254 recommendations to the relevant national and EU authorities;  The Office recommended the recovery of €485 million to the EU budget and 223 new investigations.

Throughout 2019, OLAF investigations have tackled trade in endangered species and illegal logging and import into the EU of wood and timber, sometimes from protected forests. They have uncovered international trade schemes of illicit biodiesel, fraud against forest fire detection funds, and several cases focusing on water and waste management. One case concluded in 2019 involves faking green credentials in order to obtain EU funding.

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