Transparency International calls for effective oversight of political party funding in Western Balkans

Issued by Transparency International Secretariat



The financing of political parties in five South East European countries lacks strong transparency measures and sanctions for those who avoid them, according to a report by Transparency International published today.

The report calls on Albania, Croatia, Kosovo, FYR Macedonia and Serbia to ensure that:

It calls on oversight agencies to increase their efforts to enforce new and improved party financing legislation.

“Transparent reporting by political parties about their sources of income and expenditures is in the interest of every country building a true democracy”, said Anne Koch, Regional Director for Europe and Central Asia at the Transparency International Secretariat in Berlin. “Political parties will only enjoy the confidence of their voters once they have shown that they work in the public’s interest, not their own advancement.”

Improved legislation has recently been adopted in all countries that were assessed by this research. This creates a great chance for all actors – parties, oversight agencies and everybody involved in public oversight of parties’ finances to break with old habits and provide more transparency in an area that is perceived as murky by the public in those countries.

The new report, ‘Shining a light on money in political party financing: Albania, Croatia, Kosovo, FYR Macedonia and Serbia 2011’ addresses the current problems identified in legislation and practice around party financing. The underlying research assessed ten dimensions of the issue: internal bookkeeping; parties’ reporting to oversight bodies; comprehensiveness, depth, and reliability of reporting; public access to this information (disclosure); measures of prevention, sanctions and state oversight in place; as well as oversight activities by civil society.

Common problems that exist across the countries include insufficient legal provisions on preventive measures, lack of enforcement of sanctions, lack of capacity and reach of oversight agencies, and lack of willingness of political parties to adequately disclose their political funding.

Key regional findings and recommendations of the report:

Public disclosure of the funding of political parties needs to be further strengthened with clear timeframes and mechanisms of publication in Albania and Kosovo.

Despite progress made in the publication of reports in Croatia, FYR Macedonia and Serbia, oversight agencies in these countries need to foster greater transparency by publishing audited party reports in user-friendly and comparable formats.

There is a need for strengthening provisions for the prevention of the abuse of state resources for political campaigning, and oversight agencies need to take the necessary measures to impose sanctions for violations of those rules regarding reporting and disclosure of political party funds.

 

Transparency International is the global civil society organisation leading the fight against corruption.


For any press enquiries please contact

Zorislav Antun Petrović
Transparency International Hrvatska
T: +385 98 719 275

Cornelia Abel
Transparency International Secretariat
T: +49 174 30 10 607

Latest

Support Transparency International

Risky business: Europe’s golden visa programmes

Are EU Member States accepting too much risk in their investor migration schemes?

Future Against Corruption Award 2018

TI is calling on young people across the globe to join the anti-corruption movement. People between the age of 18 and 35 are invited to submit a short video clip presenting their idea on new ways to fight corruption. Three finalists will be invited to Berlin during the International Anti-Corruption Day festivities to be awarded with the Future Against Corruption Award. Apply today!

The Azerbaijani Laundromat one year on: has justice been served?

In September last year, a massive leak of bank records from 2012 to 2014 showed that the ruling elite of Azerbaijan ran a $3 billion slush fund and an international money laundering scheme. One year on, has enough been done to hold those involved to account?

Right to information: knowledge is power

The right to information is vital for preventing corruption. When citizens can access key facts and data from governments, it is more difficult to hide abuses of power and other illegal activities - governments can be held accountable.

Paradise lost among Maldives dodgy land deals

Should tourists run for cover as a storm of corruption allegations sweeps across the Maldives?

Foreign bribery rages unchecked in over half of global trade

There are many losers and few winners when companies bribe foreign public officials to win lucrative overseas contracts. In prioritising profits over principles, governments in most major exporting countries fail to prosecute companies flouting laws criminalising foreign bribery.

Ensuring that climate funds reach those in need

As climate change creates huge ecological and economic damage, more and more money is being given to at-risk countries to help them prevent it and adapt to its effects. But poorly governed climate finance can be diverted into private bank accounts and vanity projects, often leading to damaging effects.

Social Media

Follow us on Social Media