Audit on the broadband internet infrastructure access Read full summary in English
Poland has been granted over PLN 4 billion from the European Regional Development Fund to build the broadband internet access infrastructure. As part of three operational programmes 90 percent of assumed financing was contracted, namely PLN 3.9 billion. By the end of 2015, Poland should complete the investment and account for the expenses. According to NIK there is a risk that the infrastructure construction will not be completed by the deadline and the EU funds may not be used to the full.
- Before the start of the network construction, numerous licences have to be obtained and a vast documentation - e.g. geodetic one - needs to be gathered.
- Besides, the investment managing bodies could not handle legal or organisational issues quickly enough which slowed down or even blocked the construction process.
- One year before the final deadline, the investment progress ratios were met in less than one fourth. Until December 2014, about 20 percent of the planned broadband network was built and handed over.
- That provided the broadband Internet access to 16 percent of individual clients and 7.5 percent of entities. PLN 1.6 billion of all the EU funds granted for that purpose was spent which was less than 40 percent of the grant.
- It happened that the supervision boiled down to the review of cost settlement documents delivered by the contractors.
- Only after NIK highlighted the supervision-related irregularities, the Province Board carried out some ad hoc audits at the construction site.
- According to NIK many investments were started too late. The EU funds for the broadband internet infrastructure were granted in the financial perspective for the years 2007 - 2013, plus two years extra to complete the works and pay the contractors. The Polish SAI emphasises that calling for tenders and selecting projects for execution only in 2014 - which is after the financial perspective comes to an end - poses a threat that they will not be completed and fully settled by the end of 2015.