Romania: Integrity Pacts covering education, land registration and the distribution of EU funds

Filed under - Integrity Pacts Programme

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In 2016 the European Commission teamed up with Transparency International to pilot the use of Integrity Pacts for 17 projects in 11 Member States, including Lithuania, worth a total of over EUR 900 million. To find out more about each project click here.

Corruption in Romania has improved significantly since joining the European Union thanks to aggressive enforcement from its National Anticorruption Directorate and outside factors, such as monitoring from the EU. Even so, graft in public procurement remains a worrisome problem affecting public confidence in the former communist state. Transparency International Romania, the Institute for Public Policy and the Romanian Academic Society are using integrity pacts to monitor three projects covering education, land registration and the distribution of EU funds.

Transparency International Romania & the Romanian Institute for Public Policy (IPP)

Monitoring the creation of the Digital Library of Romania

The Ministry of Culture and National Identity are keen to create a platform that brings together cultural heritage within the Digital Library of Romania.

The project will work to digitise cultural artefacts, enabling their exposure online and for a wider audience to enjoy and study. By doing this, analogue cultural heritage will be given a new, digital lease of life.

In time, this will allow both the general public and cultural institutions to access hundreds of thousands of cultural items, ranging from text and audio, to 3D objects and videos. Such heritage is currently only available to view in person, and it is hoped that this will boost its accessibility.

The Ministry of Culture and Identity is overseeing the project, which will include staff training on digitization techniques, and publicity activities to ensure that information about the work is accessible to the public. The project is being implemented between 2018 and 2022, and will be accompanied by an Integrity Pact. The Ministry hopes that this will help to mitigate risks associated with the project, and boost the amount of oversight and scrutiny that the procurement will receive. IT procurement projects in Romania have a checkered past, and have been subject to several serious corruption issues. The complexity of such IT projects, as well as the sum of money involved, mean that they are particularly worthy of inclusion in the Integrity Pact pilot.

Project details:

Creating a national education platform

The Ministry of National Education and Scientific Research together with the Directorate General Programmes for Competitiveness want to create a platform and a centralized national methodology for the management and collection of information regarding Romanian children’s school results and daily current educational activity. The platform will include a grading catalogue accessible to students, teachers and parents but also systems that will allow the level of the education in certain areas or schools to be analysed. The Ministry wants to be able to use the platform to compare Romania’s national school results to similar international test results. The Directorate General Programmes for Competitiveness believes that the implementation of the Integrity Pact in this project will complement the implementation of other risk, fraud and conflict of interest measures and will build increase transparency and trust in Governmental bodies.

Project details

  • Project: Education monitoring platform
  • Civil society monitor: Transparency International Romania and IPP
  • Contracting Authority: Ministry of National Education and Scientific Research and the Directorate General Programmes for Competitiveness
  • Progress: Preparation of the selection process
  • Project website

Monitoring land registration

Romania maintains a massive database of real estate called eTerra. Publicly accessible and easily searchable, the system is important for real estate market transactions and for landowners to access agricultural funds. It also aids in the consolidation of farmland, vital for the ability of farms to compete in the European Union. However, only about 12 percent of "territorial administrative units" are registered in eTerra, leaving a majority of property owners and the public at a disadvantage. Now, in a project that will run until 2020, the agency that oversees the system is implementing a €313 million project to register properties in 793 "territorial administrative units" in less developed rural areas. In light of Romania's problem of corruption in public procurement, this agency, the National Agency for Cadaster and Land Registration, will implement Integrity Pacts in two out of three components of the process to promote efficiency and accountability.

Project details

  • Project: Land registration platform
  • Civil society monitor: Transparency International Romania and IPP
  • Contracting Authority: National Agency for Cadaster and Land Registration
  • Progress: Preparation of the selection process
  • Project website

Romanian Academic Society

Improving the distribution and absorption of EU funds

One part of the apparatus directing cash flows from Brussels to Bucharest is the Managing Authority of the Operational Programme for Administrative Capacity (MA OPAC). This office provides technical support to Romanian agencies that absorb EU funding, helping them to strengthen their capacity to receive large amounts of money. The Romanian Academic Society will monitor public procurement processes for three of the MA OPAC's own service contracts: one for a communications and outreach provider, another for a survey assessing the impact of outreach programs, and a third for training programme.

Project details

Country / Territory - Romania   
Language(s) - English   

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