27 Apr, 2011 @ 10:00
1 min read

EU grant fraud

NEARLY 6,000 Andalucian firms have been accused of misusing 23 million euros of EU funding.

The companies allegedly took grants to create new jobs for the unemployed and then laid them off.

In order to qualify for the grants – between 1,500 and 3,000 euros per employee – companies were expected to offer jobseekers a permanent contract and keep them on the payroll for at least four years.

However, according to the Employment minister Manuel Recio, in at least 3,790 cases the new employees were fired as soon as the grant was paid out.

The latest findings come after an investigation into the job history of 15,063 people.

And the numbers are expected to be even higher as 44,177 people are still to be investigated.

Despite this, Recio denied that it was the result of widespread fraud. “I do not think most small businesses intended to defraud, but they failed to meet the requirements of the grant in the economic crisis,” he said.

Between 2003 and 2010 more than 136 million euros was awarded by the EU to help with job creation and to encourage businesses to offer staff permanent contracts.

Wendy Williams

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  1. “I do not think most small businesses intended to defraud, but they failed to meet the requirements of the grant in the economic crisis”

    In ‘corruptospeak’ this translates to: “We took the grants without no intention of following through with the contracts.”

    In other words, Spain took the EU money and in the vast majority of cases merely intended to take the money and let then fire the staff. A scam, pure and simple. The EU should now ask for the money back so that it can be re-used by proper countries. 23 million is not a small sum, this needs to be investigated properly.

  2. Fred,
    it is’nt €23m – it’s €136M.

    In Guadix the corrupt PSOE (they are all corrupt) got a huge grant to build a wall on either side of a dry riverbed to protect Guadix against flooding that would never happen.

    In fact it was built at the behest of the property developers so that they could build on good agricultural land and give a solid assurance to all mugs who would buy their crap built property, only the recession stopped the building.

    The EC is a big bad joke perpetrated on the hard working northern European folk to enable Big Business – end of story – for now.

  3. The employment minister knows who took the money he knows where it went but he is not going to do anything about it. Surprise Surprise. When is the European Union going to wake up to the fact that money ploughed into Spain ends up in some corrupt officials back pocket. All this on the same day that it is announced that 9 million Spaniards live in extreme poverty and 1 million cannot read or write. The Spanish government should hang it’s head in shame, the problem is they don’t know the meaning of the word.

  4. It says they misused €23m, so does that mean the remainder was properly used? I doubt it somehow. One can only imagine how much Spain has scammed out of the EU on schemes like this. It must run to billions of euros and yet the EU doesn’t even bat an eyelid.

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