On Tuesday 2 April 2019, the European Court of Auditors (ECA) will publish a rapid case review of outstanding commitments in the EU budget.
The rapid case review provides insight into how the so-called "outstanding commitments" in the EU budget (known as the RAL) have evolved and the factors behind the upward trend. At the end of 2017, the value of the RAL was €267 billion - almost twice the EU's annual budget. Most of the RAL represents a future payment obligation of the EU budget.
The review is expected to identify the risks posed to the EU budget and propose possible solutions. The auditors are expected to point to the likely further increase of RAL in the new 2021-2027 spending period and warn of its impact on the Commission's ability to manage future needs or settle future payment requests on time.
The EU's annual budget is made up of amounts available to be committed and amounts for actual payment during the year. The so-called "outstanding commitments" are those made in the current and previous years, but not yet paid out or cancelled. During this time, they constitute a sum known as the RAL (from the French reste-à-liquider).
The RAL has been growing gradually for over a decade, with a marked acceleration in recent years. The ECA monitors the RAL as part of its annual audit of the EU accounts.
The rapid case review will be published on the ECA website eca.europa.eu on Tuesday 2 April 2019 at 10.00 a.m. in 23 EU languages.
The press office will hold a technical briefing for the accredited press in Brussels on the day of the publication; for details, please contact firstname.lastname@example.org