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NIK about construction investment plans in the Ministry of National Defence

Every year Poland spends about PLN 1.5 billion on military investments, important for our country’s defensive power. The investment planning is not effective, though. The planning process is imprecise and complicated which makes numerous improvements necessary, thus prolonging the investment process. Besides, site managers are overworked as there are too few of them. In case of the District Infrastructure Directorate in Olsztyn, NIK filed a crime report to the Prosecutor’s Office.

From 2015 to 2019, the Armed Forces Support Inspectorate carried out 2360 investments, spending the total of over PLN 6.6 billion. At that time, 578 construction investments were executed and handed over. NIK verified if the planning and execution of the investments as part of the construction investment plans were justified, effective and legal.

The audit, apart from the Ministry of National Defence and the Inspectorate, covered seven budgetary units performing those investments. The auditors examined 336 investments worth more than PLN 4.8 billion being part of the construction investment plan.

The investments were carried out first of all to prepare essential infrastructure for operating units and priorities of the Polish Armed Forces. The investments were mainly related to the infrastructure securing the operations of individual components of the Armed Forces, particularly of the Territorial Defence Force. They were also to improve operating conditions  and adapt them to an increasing number of allied forces on the territory of Poland. Other investments were to foster the logistic support system, the airport infrastructure or to provide adequate living and training conditions to soldiers and employees of the Ministry of National Defence.

In the audited period 66 investments worth over PLN 930 million were executed as part of the operational programmes. They were related among other things to the AJT trainer aircraft, armoured personnel carriers “ROSOMAK”, transport aircrafts, military support choppers, VIP transport, simulators and link trainers; imagery intelligence and satellite imagery, maritime risk prevention, modernisation of Armoured and Mechanised Forces, anti-tank guided missiles, modernisation of Missile Forces and Artillery or patrol imagery.

Also, in the audited period, 120 investments related to military equipment were carried out.

NIK stands in a position that the investment planning process is imprecise and complicated. As a consequence, it is essential to make numerous improvements. Out of 509 investments, the initial plan was changed in 492 cases, which makes nearly 97% of the total number. According to NIK such a big number of changes (corrections) to the construction investment plan is a follow-up of imprecise planning at individual stages and too many participants of the planning process. The construction investment plan is developed by one body: the Material Planning Directorate of the Polish General Staff. Though, there are as many as 55 entities involved throughout the entire planning process.  

After the NIK audit the Minister of National Defence changed his decision concerning the principles of developing and implementing central material plans. According to the Ministry, the solutions presented in the changed decision will considerably simplify and rationalise the investment planning and execution process. As a result, it will facilitate timely and complete use of the Ministry’s funds dedicated to construction investments.

A crucial problem which occurred at the stage of performing investments is the shortage of site managers. During the audit, only 12 military investors  carried out as many as 800 up to 1000 investments worth from PLN 0.9 million to PLN 1.3 billion which were supervised by 200 site managers on average. In extreme cases there were up to 30 investments per one site manager throughout a year. NIK has noted that overworked site managers are not able to accept or settle investments in a timely and adequate manner.

The Minister of National Defence, fulfilling his legal obligation, drew up statutes for military units subject to the Head of the Armed Forces Support Inspectorate . NIK has found, though, that in terms of property management the statutes were not compliant with – among others – provisions of the acts on public finance, accounting and property management.

Following the audit, NIK filed a crime report to the District Infrastructure Directorate in Olsztyn. The Prosecutor’s Office started an investigation concerning two public officers who did not discharge their duties to gain financial benefits. That was related to the settlement of financial liabilities due to the construction of a garrison shooting range in Elbląg and the payment of undue compensation to the contractor for unperformed construction works exceeding PLN 1.6 million. Besides, some extra works were to be carried out to adapt the shooting range to the new shooting programme. The contractor was paid undue compensation for the works of nearly PLN 860 thousand.


Following the audit NIK has made the following recommendations:

  • the investments reported to be part of the construction investment plan should be diligently analysed and verified in terms of their purpose. Also, the planning process in the Ministry of National Defence needs to be simplified.  The plans should above all be based on the assumption that the Armed Forces have to meet given operational requirements. They should also consider the execution capacity of military investors.
  • the number of investments per one site manager should enable them to accept and settle investments in an adequate and timely manner. It will also save investors’ money by preventing millions of Polish zloty from freezing (which would be the case if investments were prolonged).

Author: , Date of creation: 2020-11-17 23:52:10