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    AIReF English

    “Our mission is to guarantee effective compliance of the financial sustainability principle by the General Goverment”

    Home » About Us

    About us

    The Independent Authority for Fiscal Responsibility (AIReF) is an Independent Administrative Authority (Spanish acronym: AAI) with its own legal personality and full public and private capacity. It carries out its functions autonomously and independently from the General Government and acts objectively, transparently and impartially. Its official name is “Autoridad Independiente de Responsabilidad Fiscal, AAI”, although in its public activity it also uses the name of Independent Authority for Fiscal Responsibility or AIReF indistinctly.

    OUR MISSION AND VALUES

    MISSION

    The Independent Authority for Fiscal Responsibility (AIReF) aims to ensure the sustainability of public finances as a way to ensure economic growth and the well-being of Spanish society in the medium and long term.

    AIReF is a young public institution, which began operating in 2014, but in just a few years it has built a reputation for objectivity, independence and transparency in its analysis and work.

    Its mission (aquí poner link al video del PE en inglés) is to ensure effective compliance by the Public Administrations with the principle of budgetary stability provided for in Article 135 of the Constitution, through the continuous assessment of the budget cycle, public indebtedness, and the analysis of economic forecasts. In 2021 it incorporated the evaluation of public spending as one of its permanent functions, with the aim of helping the development of more effective and efficient policies in favor of citizens.

    AIReF has a professional team (aquí poner link a la página “About us”) with extensive experience that aspires to meet the objectives entrusted to it through the publication of Reports, Opinions and Studies on a regular basis in its area of responsibility.

    AIReF’s scope of action has an impact on key elements of all Public Administrations and therefore, fully affects the decisions regarding public accounts and the main chapters of expenditure and investment, such as education, health, and public works, among others. For this reason, communication has become an essential part of AIReF’s activity.

    It belongs to the Network of Independent Fiscal Institutions of the European Union, created in 2015, as well as to the Network of Parliamentary Budget Offices and Independent Fiscal Institutions of the OECD.

    VALUES

    AIReF was set up as an institution with a duty to fulfil its mission on the basis of three guiding principles: Independence, Transparency and Accountability.

    Independence

    AIReF operates with full organic and functional independence in order to carry out its purpose. Such independence is the prerequisite for the success of its mission. Neither the President nor the members of its governing bodies or any other member of AIReF’s staff may request or accept instructions from any public or private entity.

    Transparency

    AIReF understands Transparency as the commitment to provide citizens with all the relevant information on its Reports, Opinions and Studies, as well as the grounds for them in an open, clear and timely manner. The Institution discloses the methodology and criteria underpinning its Reports, Opinions and Studies in collaboration with the different Public Administrations and international organizations.

    Accountability

    Accountability is the third key element in AIReF’s activity. In addition to the appearance of the President at least once a year in Parliament, other appearances are envisaged within the parliamentary process, within the framework of a communication policy that reinforces this accountability in an open and continuous manner.

    AIReF undergoes regular external evaluation, which affects not only the institution’s reports, but also its own governance and organizational structure and even its mandate. It is also accountable to the General Intervention of the State Administration and the Court of Auditors. Finally, its activity is framed within a multi-year strategic plan and its corresponding annual action plans, for which it is accountable in its annual report.

    OUR ACTIVITY

    REPORTS, OPINIONS AND STUDIES

    AIReF carries out its functions with the commitment to act with full transparency in its interventions and activities, anticipating the Publications Agenda. The core of AIReF’s activity is the preparation of Reports, Opinions and Studies on the matters contemplated in the Organic Law that created the organization. It also prepares an annual Activities Report to which it gives maximum publicity and dissemination.

    If you wish to access AIReF’s publications, you can do so through this link.

    PRESIDENCY

    Presidenta interna de la AIReF Cristina Herrero

    Cristina Herrero was appointed President of the Independent Authority for Fiscal Responsibility (AIReF), following a meeting of the Spanish Council of Ministers, by Royal Decree 439/2020, of March 3rd, which was also unanimously backed by all the parliamentary groups.

    Cristina had already taken over the interim presidency of the institution on January 13th, 2020. She has been a member of the institution’s management team since its foundation. In 2014, she held the position of Director of the Budget Analysis Division, thus becoming the head of one of the main areas of the institution that guarantees budgetary stability and the sustainability of the public finances.

    Click here for the complete Curriculum Vitae of the President of AIReF.

    The President of AIReF is appointed by the Council of Ministers on a proposal from the Minister for Finance and Civil Service. Prior to the appointment, the nominee must appear before the corresponding committee of Congress [Lower House of Parliament], which must endorse the nomination by an absolute majority. Should the committee fail to accept the nomination within 15 days, a simple majority vote cast by the competent committee of the Senate [Upper House of Parliament] will suffice.

    The President of AIReF is appointed for a non-renewable six-year term of office and is responsible for leading and coordinating all four teams. Her duties also include appearing before Parliament at least once a year to report on the activities of the institution (Article 24 of the Organic Charter of the Independent Authority for Fiscal Responsibility).

    The Organic Law under which AIReF was created gives the President wide range of responsibilities related to the organisation and governance of the institution and decision-making.

    She leads a Steering Committee made up of four directors corresponding to each of the four divisions into which AIReF has been organised: Budget Analysis, Economic Analysis, Public Spending Evaluation and Legal Affairs.

    The President also has a Technical Office to coordinate the work of the different divisions and carries out an open communication policy that provides the public with direct access to the work of AIReF.

    The Presidency of the Independent Authority for Fiscal Responsibility exercises with full independence and objectivity the legal representation of AIReF, directs and coordinates the activities of all its governing bodies, performs the senior management of all staff, signs contracts and agreements and arranges expenditures and payment orders. Her duties are listed in Article 25 of Organic Law 6/2013, of 14 November, on the creation of the Independent Authority for Fiscal Responsibility and in Article 25 of its Organic Charter.

    In addition, she frequently participates in different forums and conferences, both national and international.

    PRESIDENTS OF AIREF

    Cristina Herrero. President. March 2020

    José Luis Escrivá. President February 2014-January 2020

    THE TEAM

    AIReF has four divisions made up of teams with extensive experience through which it aspires to meet the targets set by publishing reports, opinions, and studies regularly in their area of responsibility. The people who have joined the project have accumulated years of experience and technical expertise in their respective specialities, which reinforces their ability to carry out the mission entrusted to them with independence and objectivity.

    ABOUT AIReF STAFF

    In general, AIReF´s staff are career civil servants of the public administrations, although they may also be on an employment contract at national or international bodies with economic, fiscal, budgetary or financial control or analysis functions. AIReF does not employ temporary or “trusted” staff.


    The AIReF team is governed by:

    ANNUAL REPORT AND STRATEGIC PLAN

    AIReF has a Strategic Plan for the period 202-2026 that sets out the roadmap that AIReF president Cristina Herrero has drawn up for the next six years. The overall objective is to consolidate the institution and strengthen it as a useful instrument for society as a whole. To achieve this, AIReF will strengthen its supervision and evaluation work to ensure the efficiency and sustainability of public policies.

    AIReF also publishes an Action Plan each year and an Annual Activities Report providing information on the activities carried out during each year.

    REGULATION

    AIReF was created within the framework of Organic Law 6/2013 of 14 November on the creation of the Independent Authority for Fiscal Responsibility, with the aim of ensuring strict compliance with the principles of budgetary stability and financial sustainability through the continuous assessment of the budget cycle, public borrowing and the analysis of economic forecasts.

    AIReF’s activity is governed by the institution’s Organic Statute approved by Royal Decree 215/2014 of 28 March.

    NETWORK OF EU IFIS

    The Network of EU Independent Fiscal Institutions was established in September 2015 following the ratification of the Bratislava Agreement. Currently, the Network of EU IFIs has a total of 32 members and is chaired by Richard van Zwol, president of the Council State of the Netherlands.  Esther Gordo Mora, director of AIReF’s Economic Analysis Division, is the vice-president.

    Participation in the EU IFI Network is voluntary and open to all EU IFIs. It aims to provide a platform for the exchange of views, experience and resources in areas of common interest. In addition, the Network has an EU Affairs Committee which aims to adopt positions on issues relating to relations with the EU institutions, including the EU fiscal framework.

    ADVISORY BOARD

    Advisory Board

    The Organic Law on the establishment of AIReF (6/2013) states that the President may be advised on the performance of his functions by experts in the areas within his competences. The advisory Board has deliberative and advisory competences only.

    In March 2023, this Advisory Council was renewed and is currently composed of ten national and international experts of recognized prestige in budgetary, economic, and financial analysis and evaluation. The new board members were appointed for two-year renewable terms.