The latest upgrade to Riga’s tram system

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 Latvia, worth a total of over EUR 900 million. To find out more about each project click here.

The first horse-drawn tram started taking people around Riga, the capital of Latvia, in 1882. Today’s network of trams is still the most used form of public transport for the city’s 800,000 population but the horses are now long gone. Over the years it has been updated and expanded – with electric trams coming into service before the First World War – and last year a further 128m Euro refurbishment plan was approved that includes support from the European Union.

This project is also part of an EU-wide pilot to strengthen accountability in public procurement. Every year in Latvia, nearly 15 per cent of GDP is estimated to be wasted due to corruption—that’s more than EUR 2 billion.

On the Riga Tram project however, Transparency International Latvia will act as an independent monitor to ensure that the money is well-spent and accounted for.

“This is a great opportunity for TI Latvia and the Riga Municipal authorities to work together to build public trust,” said Janis Volberts, Executive Director of TI Latvia.

The Integrity Pact was signed in November 2016 and the work on the project is expected to last until at least 2019. The process is relatively simple. TI Latvia will work with the Riga municipality to monitor the design and development of the project and the whole tender and construction process from start to finish. There will be a report at the end and citizens will also be invited to hold their municipality accountable.

“This is a whole new way of getting people involved in how their taxes are spent. We hope it will set a precedent for openness and transparency and, of course, ensure that there is no corruption,” said Janis Veide, Project Manager of the Integrity Pacts project at TI Latvia.

Project details

Country / Territory - Latvia   
Topic - Public procurement   
Tags - Public procurement   |   Integrity Pacts   |   Transport   |   Infrastructure   |   Transparency International Latvia   |   Riga   |   Public transport   |   clean contracts   

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