Story By: Gheorghi Caraseni, Sub Editor: Joseph Golder, Agency: Central European News
A Romanian fish market needs to pay back the European Union 2.7 million GBP in wasted funding because it closed the day after its inauguration after it was not connected to the water supply.
The National Fisheries and Aquaculture Agency (NFAA) will have to return to the European Union (EU) the money invested in a fish market built in the city of Tulcea in Dobruja County, eastern Romania.
According to the head of The Ministry of Agriculture of Romania, Adrian Oros, the NFAA has to reimburse 15 million RON (2.7 million GBP) to the EU for the fish market put into operation in April 2019 which then closed the day after its inauguration.
Oros said: “What was the practical idea of the project? – to bid and market all the fish production from the Danube Delta Biosphere Reserve. They had to have a headquarters, a collection point, a dedicated information system and logistics.”
“The audit carried out by the European Union Court of Audit (EUCA) showed that that there were only two transactions processed on the inauguration day. Not only the EUCA, also the local auditors noticed some serious irregularities: there was no water connected, the collection point wasn’t functioning, the transport vessels were not registered and no essential authorisation was obtained”.
Oros confirmed local auditors have been sent to investigate what happened.
In order to not lose European funding, the authorities reportedly hastily inaugurated the fish market on 8th April in the presence of: the Prime Minister Viorica Dancila, Minister of Agriculture Petre Daea, Minister of the Interior Carmen Dan, Minister of Transport Razvan Cuc and the Head of the Tulcea Council County Horia Teodorescu.
After Prime Minister Dancila left the fish market reportedly closed.
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