European Parliament Resolution of 24 September 1964 on budgetary and administrative problems arising from the merging of the executives and possibly of the Communities. The idea of establishing a European Court of Auditors had already been considered by the European Parliament in 1964. It appears to be closely linked to the planned merging of the executives of the three Communities - including the harmonisation of their budgetary powers - and to the concept of creating the Communities' own resources (point 15 of the resolution).
The Decision of 21 April 1970 on the Communities’ own resources is the basis for the establishment of the Court of Auditors. This new system of financing the Communities entirely from own resources makes it necessary to strengthen the system for monitoring the implementation of the budget.
The European Parliament, and in particular its Committee on Budgets, carried out an extensive campaign to promote the establishment of a European Audit Office as a replacement for the Audit Board. The proposals put forward by Members of the European Parliament were set out in a document entitled 'The Case for a European Audit Office', drawn up by the Vice-President of the Committee on Budgets, Heinrich Aigner. In his introduction to this document, Aigner rejects, for the time being, the creation of an actual 'institution' of the European Communities and proposes, in the meantime, a model which could be set up on the basis of Article 206 of the EEC Treaty (new Article 276 of the EC Treaty) concerning the Audit Board.
Heinrich Aigner was a Member of the European Parliament from 1961 to 1988 as part of the Group of the Christian Democrats. As President of the Committee on Budgetary Control, he was given responsibility for drawing up a report on that part of the draft Council Treaty which concerned the establishment of a European Court of Auditors.
In this interview given in 1986 in Luxembourg, Heinrich Aigner, then Christian Democratic Group Member of the European Parliament and responsible, in 1975, for drawing up the report on the section of the draft Treaty dealing with the establishment of a European Court of Auditors in his capacity as rapporteur for the Committee on Budgetary Control, welcomes the role played by the Court of Auditors in the area of budgetary control of the European Communities.
Resolution of 11 July 1975 embodying the Opinion of the European Parliament on the draft Treaty proposed by the Council amending certain financial provisions of the Treaties establishing the European Communities and the Treaty establishing a single Council and a single Commission of the European Communities (section on the establishment of a European Court of Auditors).
Treaty amending certain financial provisions of the Treaties establishing the European Communities and of the Treaty establishing a Single Council and a Single Commission of the European Communities. On 22 July 1975, in Brussels, the Member States of the Europe of the Nine sign this Treaty which provides for the establishment of a Court of Auditors and strengthens the European Parliament's budgetary powers. These reforms proved necessary following the implementation of the financial system of own resources, which established the financial autonomy of the European Communities.
According to Sacchettini, an adviser to the legal department of the Council of the European Communities, the Court of Auditors, as established by the Treaty of 22 July 1975, is not an institution in the sense laid down by the Treaties and, within the institutional structure, it is at a similar level to the Economic and Social Committee. The author describes the Court of Auditors as an auxiliary body of an administrative nature, which assists the Assembly and the Council in the exercise of their duty as regards overseeing the implementation of the budget.
Address given by Mr Hans Kutscher, President of the Court of Justice, on 25 October 1977 at the swearing-in of the first Members of the Court of Auditors. In his view, if the Court of Justice constitutes the 'legal conscience' of the Community, the Court of Auditors represents its 'financial conscience'; this expression has since become a leitmotif of the Court of Auditors.
In the French magazine L’Europe en formation, a few months after the establishment in October 1977 of the European Court of Auditors, Paul Gaudy, a Member of the Court from 1977 to 1987, explains the reasons why this new body was established and describes its role and its powers and responsibilities.
Judgments of the Court of Justice of the European Communities (First Chamber) of 4 February 1982: Case 828/79, Robert Adam v Commission and Case 1253/79, Dino Battaglia v Commission. For these two cases brought in 1979 by two officials of the Commission employed at the Ispra Joint Research Centre in Italy, the Court of Justice ruled on the legal statute of the Court of Auditors. In both judgments, the Court of Justice concluded that the Court of Auditors is not an institution within the meaning of Article 24 of the Merger Treaty, whereby consultation would be an essential condition for the adoption of a regulation amending the Staff Regulations.
Opinion of Advocate General Capotorti, delivered on 14 May 1981. Excerpt from the section concerning failure to consult the Economic and Social Committee and the Court of Auditors in Cases 828/79 (Adam v Commission) and 1253/79 (Battaglia v Commission). According to a strict construction of Article 24 of the Merger Treaty, the Court of Auditors cannot be treated as a Community 'institution'.
Decisions by the Court of Auditors, of 9 December 1993, 27 January 1994 and 15 January 1998, concerning its name. Although the full and official name is ‘Court of Auditors of the European Communities', the title ‘European Court of Auditors' is commonly used in non-legal documents. The title ‘Court of Auditors' without any other precision is admissible for the acts of the Court which are habitually published in the Official Journal of the European Communities.
In January 1998, on the 20th anniversary of the establishment of the European Court of Auditors, its President, Giuseppe Carbone, summarises the achievements of the institution and emphasises the progress made as a result of the synthesis of the experiences of the various countries in the field.
On 27 November 2002, as part of the celebrations to mark the 25th anniversary of the European Court of Auditors, the President of the Court, Juan Manuel Fabra Vallés, delivers an address in the hemicycle of the Kirchberg Conference Centre, Luxembourg.
In this film, produced in 2004, Michaele Schreyer, European Commissioner for Budget, Financial Management and Anti-Fraud, Diemut Theato, Chairman of the European Parliament’s Committee on Budgetary Control, together with the heads of the national audit bodies, talk about the cooperation between their institutions and the European Court of Auditors.
On 19 July 2008, the Luxembourg newspaper Le Quotidien takes the opportunity of the presentation to the press of the European Court of Auditors’ annual report to explain its supervisory role over the finances of the European Union.
On 21 July 2008, as the annual report of the European Court of Auditors is presented to the press, Henri Grethen, Luxembourg member of the Court, describes his work in this supervisory institution of the European Union to the Luxembourg newspaper Le Quotidien.
On 27 November 2008, an exhibition presenting the 30 years of the European Court of Auditors is opened at the European Information Centre in Luxembourg. The photo shows, from left to right: Henri Grethen, Luxembourg Member of the Court, and Vítor Manuel da Silva Caldeira, President of the Court.