ITALIAN AFCOS (Anti Fraud Coordination Structure)
The Committee for the Fight Against Community Fraud (CO.L.A.F) is the ideal instrument for the in-depth analysis of all phenomena and problems related to community provisions. Therefore, with Presidential decree (D.P.R.) n. 91 of May 14th 2007, the Committee for the fight against fraud, in order to render its action more effective, has been reformed in both its function and composition. The Committee is based in the Presidency of the Council of Ministers - Department for European Affairs. The Committee strategically is in a super partes position in respect to the single centralized and peripheral administrations. The Committee is presided by the Minister for European Affairs and represents, at its highest management levels, the various administrations interested in the fraud topic. To this end, the Committee played the following actions: a. Coordination at the national level to: overcome criticism as a result of the high number of institutions involved; perform consulting and guidance services for the correct use of funds. b. Closing of “open cases” with the European Commission through the continuous and constant exchange of information with the management authorities in charge; c. Permanent study activities to propose the necessary legislative modification regarding “recoveries”; d. Supporting institutional communication to guarantee accurate information on the activities that are currently taking place in the fight against Fraud; e. Coordinating the activities of COLAF with those of the Community Institutions, particularly through the constant participation of the CO.CO.L.A.F and of the European Network against fraud (OAFCN); f. developing permanent “training” activities at different levels: central and regional, through the organization of seminars regarding, in particular, structural funds and P.A.C. which favor the dialogue between the different Administrations interested in managing Community resources, developing a dialectic comparison between the community institutions, with the aim of ensuring uniform behaviors, stimulating the recovery of irregular funds and update “open” cases; college-level, through the development of a level II Masters Program: “Expert in European Financing,” in conjunction with all the universities of Rome, with the ultimate objective of innovative preparation of highly qualified professionals capable of contributing to the correct and prompt management of Public Community Funds;
post-College and Professional, has been undersigned an Agreement Protocol between COLAF and the National Council of the Order of Business Consultants and of expert accountants; g. publication of the names of beneficiaries of community financing also on a single website of the Presidency of the Council (www.politicheeuropee.it), in the spirit of the European Initiative for Transparency, object of recent demands of the European Parliament; h. study carried out for the adoption of new organizational and operational measures (launch a comparison to modify the flow of information, “project-specific” actions, thereby rendering the Italian experience available for use by OLAF and by the other Member States); i. proposal, set forth in CO.CO.L.A.F and having drawn praise from the Commission, to create, within the other member states, organisms similar to the Italian Committee to make a single network of representatives also and especially for OLAF. To this end, almost all the States have already instituted the “AFCOS” (Anti-Fraud Coordinating Structure); j. Cooperation offer to Member States in need of help. In this context, the Italy has offered the widest availability to cooperate with the Commission and other Member States who so request.