Agriculture Funds Under Investigation, Allegations of Corruption, EC Suspends Reimbursements to Albania

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The European Commission has temporarily halted financing for Albania under the IPARD 2 program, which is designed to subsidize agricultural initiatives. The revelation was confirmed to A2 CNN by the European Union Delegation in Tirana, who clarified that the step was taken as part of a probe launched by Brussels in response to corruption suspicions involving agricultural funding.

“The European Commission has informed the Albanian government that preliminary measures have been taken based on preliminary information provided by the European Anti-Fraud Office [OLAF] following an investigation into allegations of corruption related to the implementation of the IPARD II program.” As a precautionary move to protect the European Union’s financial interests, the European Commission has temporarily delayed reimbursements to Albanian authorities for expenses made under the IPARD II initiative,” the European Union Delegation in Albania explained to A2 CNN.

The Delegation claims that the inquiry is underway and that, once completed, additional steps would be taken if necessary.

“The European Commission cannot comment on any potential OLAF findings regarding the implementation of the IPARD II program in Albania (2014-2020).” The OLAF probe is still ongoing. When OLAF presents its final report, the European Commission will notify the Albanian authorities and, depending on the report’s conclusions, will take any additional steps necessary to protect the European Union’s financial interests,” adds the European Union Delegation.