The Court of Accounts of the Republic of Moldova (CoARM) presented today, March 15, within the Public Finance Control Committee, two Audit Reports: the performance audit report on the management of phytosanitary products and fertilizers in terms of guaranteeing the safety of food products of plant origin and the compliance audit report of the administration and management of surface water bodies, protection zones, water bed land and related hydrotechnical constructions.
Tatiana Șevciuc, Member of the CoARM, reported to the Parliamentary Committee about the results and findings of the audit that were the basis for the formulation of the general conclusions, as well as the submitted recommendations.
The CoARM’s auditors mentioned that the responsible authorities, through the management mechanism of phytosanitary products and fertilizers (PPF) existing at the moment, cannot fully guarantee the harmlessness of PPF in food products of vegetable origin.
The audit identified numerous deficiencies in the way phytosanitary products and fertilizers are managed, the risk of affecting the health of the population and the environment being significant.
The use of phytosanitary products and fertilizers plays an important role in the agricultural production of the Republic of Moldova by maintaining the health of plants, preventing their destruction due to disease and infection and contributing to their growth and development. However, pesticides and fertilizers applied incorrectly to crops can enter soil and surface water through dissolution and runoff, and can also enter groundwater, with the risk of adversely affecting non-target species, both in terrestrial and aquatic ecosystems.
The participants in the meeting mentioned that the management process of PPF is affected by numerous deficiencies, the rectification of which is requested in the near future. However, the continued admission of identified irregularities, normative and procedural gaps will further contribute to the deterioration of the state's ability to guarantee the safety of plants, the environment and subsequently human health.
With reference to the second Report on the compliance audit of the administration and management of surface water bodies, protection zones, water bed land and hydrotechnical constructions related to them, the CoARM highlighted the most relevant findings.
The Court of Accounts came to the conclusion that the new mechanisms for the exploitation of surface water bodies, protection zones, water bed land and related hydrotechnical constructions must become more prompt, and the existing ones are to be further developed.
The evaluation of the real situation regarding the number of reservoirs and ponds, existing in the Republic of Moldova, attested significant divergences in the data held by different structures involved in the management of the water bed lands. This situation is due to the lack of a single database, containing information on the number of reservoirs and ponds, to ensure their compliant management, as well as the protection of water resources in the country. More than that, the technical condition of some hydrotechnical constructions presents a danger caused by: the damaged condition of the dams, the lack or non-functionality of the water regulation and drainage facilities, as well as the silting of the water drainage spillways.
The Republic of Moldova has a functional, but limited, framework for the administration and management of groundwater. The non-implementation of measures for the delimitation and clear establishment of rights and responsibilities regarding the lands of the water fund and hydrotechnical constructions as an indivisible good prevents the compliant and rational management of reservoirs and ponds.
In this context, the Chairperson of the Public Finance Control Committee, Tatiana Cunetchi, asked the responsible entities to take into account the audit's recommendations, in order to remove the identified deficiencies and achieve a positive impact for society.