The European Court of Auditors was set up in 1975. It is based in Luxembourg and its role is to check that EU funds, which come from the taxpayers, are properly collected and spent legally, economically and for the intended purpose. Its aim is to ensure that the taxpayers get maximum value for their money, and it has the right to audit any person or organisation handling EU funds.
The Court has one member from each EU country, appointed by the Council for a renewable term of six years. The members elect one of their number as President for a renewable term of three years. Vítor Manuel da Silva Caldeira, from Portugal, was elected President in January 2008. His mandate was renewed on 12 January 2011 for a second term.