Statement of assurance from the European Court of Auditors regarding Eurofound's final accounts 2008

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The European Court of Auditors has issued a statement of assurance in relation to these accounts. This statement is reproduced below:

3.Pursuant to the provisions of Article 248 of the Treaty the Court has audited the annual accounts [3] of the Foundation, which comprise the 'financial statements' [4] and the 'reports on implementation of the budget' [5] for the financial year ended 31 December 2008 and the legality and regularity of the transactions underlying those accounts.

4.This Statement of Assurance is addressed to the European Parliament and the Council in accordance with Article 185(2) of Council Regulation (EC, Euratom) No 1605/2002 [6].

The Director’s responsibility
5.As authorising officer, the Director implements the revenue and expenditure of the budget in accordance with the financial rules of the Foundation under his own responsibility and within the limits of authorised appropriations [7]. The Director is responsible for putting in place [8] the organisational structure and the internal management and control systems and procedures relevant for drawing up final accounts [9] that are free from material misstatement, whether due to fraud or error, and for ensuring that the transactions underlying those accounts are legal and regular.

The Court’s responsibility
6.The Court’s responsibility is to provide, on the basis of its audit, a statement of assurance as to the reliability of the annual accounts of the Foundation and the legality and regularity of the transactions underlying them.

7.The Court conducted its audit in accordance with the IFAC and ISSAI [10] International Auditing Standards and Codes of Ethics. Those standards require that the Court complies with ethical requirements and plans and performs the audit to obtain reasonable assurance about whether the accounts are free from material misstatement and whether the underlying transactions are legal and regular.

8.The Court’s audit involves performing procedures to obtain audit evidence about the amounts and disclosures in the accounts and about the legality and regularity of the transactions underlying them. The procedures selected depend on its audit judgement including the assessment of the risks of material misstatement of the accounts or of illegal or irregular transactions, whether due to fraud or error. In making those risk assessments internal control relevant to the entity’s preparation and presentation of accounts is considered in order to design audit procedures that are appropriate in the circumstances. The Court’s audit also includes evaluating the appropriateness of accounting policies used and, the reasonableness of accounting estimates made by management, as well as evaluating the overall presentation of the accounts.

9.The Court believes that the audit evidence obtained is sufficient and appropriate to provide a basis for the opinions set out below.

Opinion on the reliability of the accounts
10.In the Court’s opinion, the Foundation’s Annual Accounts [11] present fairly, in all material respects, its financial position as of 31 December 2008 and the results of its operations and its cash flows for the year then ended, in accordance with the provisions of its Financial Regulation.

Opinion on the legality and the regularity of the transactions underlying the accounts
11.In the Court’s opinion, the transactions underlying the annual accounts of the Foundation for the financial year ended 31 December 2008 are, in all material respects, legal and regular.


Notes

3 These accounts are accompanied by a report on the budgetary and financial management during the year which gives inter alia an account of the rate of implementation of the appropriations with summary information on the transfers of appropriations among the various budget items.

4 The financial statements include the balance sheet and the economic outturn account, the cash-flow table, the statement of changes in capital and the annex to the financial statements which includes the description of the significant accounting policies and other explanatory information.

5 The budget implementation reports comprise the budget outturn account and its annex.

6 OJ L 248, 16.9.2002, p. 1.

7 Article 33 of Commission Regulation (EC, Euratom) No 2343/2002 of 23 December 2002 (OJ L 357, 31.12.2002, p. 80).

8 Article 38 of Commission Regulation (EC, Euratom) No 2343/2002 of 23 December 2002 (OJ L 357, 31.12.2002, p. 80).

9 The rules concerning the presentation of the accounts and accounting by the Agencies are laid down in chapter 1 of Title VII of Commission Regulation (EC, Euratom) No 2343/2002 of 23 December 2002 (OJ L 357, 31.12.2002, p. 87) as last amended by Commission Regulation (EC, Euratom) No 652/2008 of 9 July 2008 (OJ L 181, 10.7.2008, p. 23) and are integrated as such in the Financial Regulation of the Foundation.

10 International Federation of Accountants (IFAC) and International Standards of Supreme Audit Institutions (ISSAI).

11 The Final Annual Accounts were drawn up on 30 June 2009 and received by the Court on 2 July 2009. The Final Annual Accounts, consolidated with those of the Commission are published in the Official Journal of the European Union by 15 November of the following year. These can be found on the following website http://eca.europa.eu or www.eurofound.europa.eu.

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