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The #TruthNeedsFriends Campaign

People who expose the truth nowadays are harassed, demoted, fired, or sued by employers who are desperate to silence them. Also known as “whistleblowers”, these people speak up to defend our rights, but when they say something their bosses don’t like, they suffer fierce retaliation.

The good news is that all of this could soon become a thing of the past: The European Union is on the verge of adopting a new law that would protect people who tell the truth and punish the bullies that are trying to shut them up.

But we need to make sure that the law is done right! People who tell the truth shouldn’t be punished. So please join our campaign and put pressure on your government – because the #TruthNeedsFriends.

About the #TruthNeedsFriends Campaign

We have a massive opportunity to end the fear, silence, loneliness and bullying that some people suffer from just for telling the truth. The European Union should soon adopt new legislation that will change the lives of people who reveal the truth about illegalities, corrupt practices and other dodgy dealings – otherwise known as whistleblowers

The first of its kind, the new European Whistleblower Directive would oblige all 27* EU governments to introduce minimum standards of protection for truth-tellers.

These protections would include penalties for people that retaliate against whistleblowers or try to shut them up; an obligation for public and private bodies to set up channels for receiving reports and to keep the identity of the whistleblower confidential; and legal shields for whistleblowers so that, if for example they breach a confidentiality agreement, they would not be held liable for it.

A law like this could eventually overturn the strong social norm that we learn as we get older: If you want to stay out of trouble, keep your head down and your mouth shut. But this social norm is what allows people with no shame to “get away with it”: whether it be marketing horse meat as beef, sexually abusing the people you’re supposed to protect, or spying on everyone in the world.

Punishing people who tell the truth is not only unfair, it’s a perversion of the values that we were all brought up with as children. We cannot allow the corrupt – desperate to cover their tracks – to starting firing, demoting, harassing or suing the only person who cared enough to tell the uncomfortable truth.

We want a world in which the truth has nothing to fear.

So far, the European Parliament has been the strongest in defending the right to the truth. Now, the Parliament has to negotiate with the European Commission and the Council (where all the EU governments are represented) in order to draft the final version of the much-awaited whistleblower protection law. It’s a race against time to get it adopted before the upcoming European Parliament elections.

Unfortunately, not all governments are fully convinced about the possibility of allowing people like us, or your colleagues or family members, to break the silence. And that’s why we’re launching the #TruthNeedsFriends campaign.

The #TruthNeedsFriends campaign seeks to motivate people to stand up to the bullies of the adult world who seek to hide the truth. By sharing the video and tagging our government representatives on social media, we are letting them know that we want to defend the truth and to protect the people who speak up.

The future of whistleblowers across Europe is hanging in the balance – which is why the truth really needs a lot of friends right now. Friends like you!

Find out more about our work on whistleblowers here:




MEPs vote for new rules on lobbying in major victory for transparency

The European Parliament has just voted for binding rules for more transparency around MEPs’ meetings with lobbyists and seized the opportunity to the amended Rules of Procedure through the “Corbett Report”. The report calls for stricter rules around rapporteurs and other MEPs in other official positions to disclose their meetings with interest representatives on the Transparency Register. Benedek Jávor and the Greens/EFA group has been calling for these actions for years. Mr. Jávor believes that all lobby meetings are need to be published in a searchable database to ensure the transparency and the integrity of the legislative procedures.  He has been disclosing his lobby meetings on his website, which is available here.

The Parliament also voted in favour of stricter use of MEPs’ General Expenditure Allowance (GEA). Mr. Jávor is publishing regularly his expenditures which you can see here.

In an extremely unusual steps the Hungarian Fidesz MEP Mr. József Szájer of EPP group had pushed through a secret ballot on the new transparency rules. They tried to hide their opinion, but an overwhelming majority of MEPs 380 votes in favour of more transparency.


Hungary is a new tax haven according to a new report

A new research commissioned by the Greens/EFA Group in the European Parliament shows that many companies do not pay much tax in many EU countries – in absolute values or in comparison to nominal rates or to some other countries.

Effective tax rates (ETRs) estimated from companies’ balance sheet data are useful indicators for the tax system. To estimate the ETRs of multinational enterprises (MNEs), the research used unconsolidated data of MNEs from Orbis, the imperfect (so these ETRs should not be used as the only evidence for decisions), but best available company-level data for the EU. It analyses ETRs and nominal rates for the period from 2011 to 2015 for EU countries.

Hungary has the second lowest effective tax rate in the European Union (7.5%), which basically makes it a tax haven within the EU. This is clear part of Orbán’s policy as he favours international investors and multinational corporations and he wants to make Hungary attractive only with low taxation and low wages of workers.

Calculator - tax © Werbefabrik - Pixabay






The research shows that the effective tax rates in the European Union are much lower than nominal tax rates. ETRs and nominal rates are positively related, but for the EU countries less so. At the country level, the correlation between ETRs and nominal rates for the 63 countries is 0.63, while it is almost a half of that, 0.33, for EU countries only. In addition, most countries appear to tax MNEs regressively: the larger the MNE, the lower the effective tax rate.

According to the available data, MNEs can expect to pay anything between 6% and 30% (and as little as 2% or as much as 49% in the most extreme cases) of their profit in taxes. Luxembourg has the lowest ETR (2.2%) and Norway the highest ETR (48.7%) among the 63 countries in the final sample. In the EU, in addition to Luxembourg, the lowest ETRs are to be found in Hungary (7.5%), Bulgaria (9.5%), Cyprus (9.6%) as well as in the Netherlands (10.4%) and Latvia (10.6%). Within the EU, Italy and Greece have the highest ETR (30.4% and 28.4% respectively), with the third and fourth highest being Spain and Slovakia (21.8% and 20.2% respectively). The remaining 18 EU countries (out of 28 current EU member states) have ETRs between 12% and 20%. Some of the biggest EU economies are within this range, including the United Kingdom (14.9%), France (16.7%) and Germany (19.6%). The unweighted average of 28 EU countries’ ETRs of 15% (in contrast the statutory rate average is 23%) is lower than the other countries’ average ETR of 22% within the sample of 63 countries (in contrast their statutory rate average is 24%). The five countries with the highest ETRs (as well as some of the highest statutory tax rates) are all non-EU member states: Peru, Columbia, Pakistan, Argentina and Norway.

ETRs are lower than nominal rates in most countries, in particular for some EU countries. A case in point is, again, Luxembourg (2.2% vs 29.1%), but the nominal rate is not very illuminating in terms of providing information about the tax burden that MNEs face in many other EU countries. Indeed, nine out of ten countries with the highest percentage point differences between the two rates are EU members: Luxembourg, Belgium, Malta, France, the Netherlands, Austria, Hungary, Finland and Sweden. In addition, Germany, the biggest EU economy, has one of the highest percentage point differences (19.6% vs 29.5%). On the other hand, some countries exhibit ETRs comparable to their nominal rates, including Ukraine (ETR of 20.2% vs nominal rate of 20.2%), Bulgaria (9.5% vs 10%), or Slovakia (20.2% vs 21%). The fact that ETRs are mostly lower than statutory rates is natural given by tax holiday and other tax provisions that make the ETRs lower than nominal rates and, interestingly, the results reveal how big the differences are across countries. In addition, most countries appear to tax MNEs regressively: the larger the MNE, the lower the ETR. For most countries, there is a negative relationship between size and ETR as measured by a correlation coefficient between the size of MNEs by total assets and their ETRs. Overall, there are some tentative conclusions about a race to the bottom in ETRs from the evidence that has been presented. These include that some EU countries do not seem to tax MNEs much and these EU countries cannot lower their rates much lower since they are already close to the bottom. These results are based on the best available, but imperfect company-level data, and therefore we call for better data, for example, in the form of MNEs’ public country-by-country reporting data.

In the past years, the EU has proposed key reforms to reduce the tax avoidance of big multinational companies in Europe – such as public Country-by-Country Reporting and Common Consolidated Corporate Tax Base – but these are blocked in Council by the member states. The Greens/EFA group in the European Parliament calls on the EU member states to end this blockade and approve the necessary reforms without any further delay.In the view of extremely low corporate tax rates in some EU member states, the European Commission should make a proposal to introduce minimum effective corporate tax rates in the EU to stop the existing race to the bottom and end the unhealthy tax competition in the European Union.

The European Commission should also be ready to use the article 116 of the Treaty on Functioning of the European to propose legislation in this respect.

The full report available here

Of funds and values: Conditionality in EU cohesion policy

Günther Oettinger, Member of the European Commission in charge of Budget and Human Resources, speaks at a conference on the Multiannual Financial Framework (MFF) in Brussels, 8 January 2018. [© European Union , 2018 / Source: EC - Audiovisual Service]
Günther Oettinger, Member of the European Commission in charge of Budget and Human Resources, speaks at a conference on the Multiannual Financial Framework (MFF) in Brussels, 8 January 2018. [© European Union , 2018 / Source: EC – Audiovisual Service]
















As the EU’s multi-annual budget is being negotiated, the amounts and efficiency of spending matter but also priorities and European values when disbursing programmes. Smarter conditionality is needed, triggering less political backlash, and, where needed, direct payment to beneficiaries, argue Benedek Jávor and Laszlo Andor.

Benedek Jávor is a Member of the European Parliament in the Greens/EFA Group and Laszlo Andor, Senior Fellow at FEPS, is the former EU Commissioner for Employment, Social Affairs and Inclusion. Both are from Hungary.

The draft MFF proposed by the European Commission includes new tools for addressing the systemic misuse of EU funds. This is a major step forward, as the Commission does not only acknowledge the problem that EU funds can become more likely targets of fraud and corruption than national budgets in some countries, but also that what we are seeing today is a systemic problem.

We fully share the Commission’s analysis and agree that the situation is grave: state-level fraud is organized by political actors. That results in a waste of EU resources but inevitably undermines democracy, the public interest, and the rule of law, as well as the principles of partnership and planning inherent to the policies. We see that government actors use European funds to enrich their political or business affiliates with the ostensible goal to strengthen their power regardless of the financial and moral cost. A black book could be filled with cases representing a variety of countries and various political families, although close observers would agree that the current Hungarian practice is in the class of its own.
While we are deeply concerned, we also believe that the discussions have so far not explored all options and there is a high risk of launching a mechanism with serious flaws by 1. reliance on a political decision as a trigger of sanctions (i.e. to establish that country X violated the rule of law), and 2. threatening to cut country X off entirely from EU funds once the trigger is pulled. In our view, the triggering of sanctions needs to be objective and transparent which requires a solid set of indicators and benchmarks and that the sanction must be well targeted to hit the perpetrator of fund abuse rather than the innocent hostages.
The Commission proposal to suspend payments and commitments comes from a good intention. If triggered, this would prohibit entering into new commitments until the Member State in question returns to the expected path of European values. However, experience shows that abusive governments do not respond to such threats. In fact, they are likely to turn these to their own advantage by showing the EU as a biased body which blackmails and punishes the non-abiding Member States. If the EU withholds all the funds from the Member States, it can be easily interpreted as blackmail with a high risk of backfiring politically.
The EU must show that it regards only the best interest of the citizens when acting on sanctioning a Member State; taking those funds into its own hands and distributing them in the Member States according to the original goals would be the way to do that. In other words, our proposal is that the Commission in such cases should suspend shared management. This way the EU’s actions cannot be regarded as blackmail while it could avoid the corrupt allocation channels and financing of oligarchs close to governments.
Direct management solutions could be also introduced in a gradual and proportional manner: first, only those payments could come under direct control of the Commission, where they have already rejected payments as a consequence of irregularities or detected fraud. As a next step, in case of systemic problems in operative programmes or the complete management system and democratic control mechanisms in a Member State, direct or indirect management could be introduced in a more comprehensive in the case of serious and systemic breaches. Alternatively, a third type of management method: “assisted management” could be invented by planting EU experts in national agencies without completely sidelining them. This could be either requested by the Member State or, above a certain threshold (frequency of errors, suspensions and OLAF investigations), assisted management could be launched by the Commission as well.
Cohesion policy and EU funds are not “gifts” for Member States, but indispensable parts of a balanced and fair functioning economic governance and single market in Europe. Thus, complete withdrawal of funds should remain a  “nuclear option”. On the other hand, systemic corruption can lead to a situation where EU funds simply do not fulfill their original goal of improving competitiveness, developing infrastructure and investing in human capital or better governance. In those cases, the solution shouldn’t be to punish societies of the affected Member States but to repair the management system in a way which is able to efficiently prevent systemic misuse of funds by national political or management systems.
Choosing the best way forward is by no means easy, especially on such a highly politicised instrument. Pro-European forces in the European Parliament and elsewhere should be united and turn up their efforts in defense of EU values and resources. However, this should not only translate into taking a strong stand against populism, but also defending the rights and opportunities of the victims of misbehaving governments, which often can be found among the citizens of the Member State in question.


Article 7 procedure against the Hungarian government

In September, the European Parliament took the historic step of voting to launch Article 7 procedures against Hungarian government. 448 votes to 197, a large majority in the European Parliament spanning the political spectrum, including the clear majority of EPP as well, approved the proposal. Approval means the European Parliament sees a clear risk of a serious breach of the EU founding values and the Parliament asks the Council to debate the issue. The values identified at risk are judicial independence, freedom of expression, corruption, rights of minorities, and the situation of migrants and refugees are key concerns. Launching Article 7 procedure sent a clear message to Viktor Orbán’s government, that he would no longer be able to disregard EU membership rules without facing the consequences. Although the government presented it as an unfair attack on the Hungarian nation, according to recent polls, the majority of Hungarian citizens are aware that this is a debate about the state of democracy in Hungary, and according to the same poll 51% of Hungarians would have voted in favour of the report

There are still many stages left in article seven procedure, the proposal for a Council decision will now be sent to the EU member states. They may determine the existence of a clear risk of a serious breach of the EU values in Hungary. Afterwards, the European Council may determine, by unanimity and with the Parliament’s consent, the existence in Hungary of a serious and persistent breach of the rule of law, democracy and fundamental rights. A unanimous vote is unlikely to happen because both Poland and Hungary are in similar article 7 situations, and have pledged to vote against the punishment of the other.

Since the vote to trigger Article 7, there have been meetings regarding the next steps. After one such meeting, MEP Judith Sargentini (Greens/EFA, NL) criticized EU countries for stalling the process. She explained that as time is lost, “we see further deterioration of academic freedom and the undermining of judicial independence in Hungary”. The Hungarian government has distributed its assessment of the issues. But, as of now, it is not clear what will happen at the next ministers meeting in December.

The impact the Article 7 vote had on the EPP party is noteworthy because Orbán’s Fidesz party is a part of the European Parliment’s EPP. Benedek Jávor explains that earlier on, Orbán’s goal was to push the whole EPP into a more far-right position. Nevertheless, his allies within the EPP voted in favor of the Sargentini Report meaning, he was unsuccessful. The vote made clear that Orbán’s only allies are Eurosceptic, racist, far-right parties. An EPP summit that took place after the vote sent a unified message to Orbán by adopting a resolution in defence of liberal democracy in the face of rising populism across Europe, that showed Orbán cannot challenge basic EU rules and values.

Benedek Jávor discussed two possible future developments that may take place because of the Article 7 vote. The first is that Orbán will likely attempt to bring Eurosceptic far-right forces together into a political group at the European Parliament. A second possible development is practical sanctions on Hungary, which could happen even without a council decision on the Article 7 procedure. At the next multiannual financial framework, there is a proposed option to freeze payments of EU funds in cases of corruption. Meaning payments from the EU to Hungary could be frozen.

MEPs resolved to secure laws on media protection

Members of the European Parliament will stop at nothing until EU laws aimed at tackling court cases that intimidate investigative journalists and independent media are introduced, MEP David Casa said yesterday.

The Nationalist MEP gave comments to The Sunday Times of Malta in the wake of calls by a cross-party group of europarliamentarians on Friday, proposing new EU laws to address SLAPPs (strategic lawsuit against public participation).

The group – made up of Mr Casa, Ana Gomes, Monica Macovei, Maite Pagazaurtundúa, Stelios Kouloglou and Benedek Jávor – wants the European Commission to create a directive which would allow journalists and media houses to ask for such suits to be dismissed and seek compensation while also fining companies which dodge the directive by filing SLAPP lawsuits in non-EU jurisdictions.

Read: SLAPP down companies bullying free press, MEPs urge Commission

The MEPs have also asked for the creation of a fund for journalists and media houses fighting such suits and that the Commission names and shames companies which resort to SLAPP tactics.

A call for such anti-SLAPP legislation was also made in the report by MEPs from the Pana and Libe committees, who carried out a two-day fact-finding mission in Malta last year. The report was published last Thursday.

The delegation looked into allegations of maladministration and money laundering in Malta, meeting with the Prime Minister, the Police Commissioner, the Chief Justice, representatives of the Malta Financial Services Authority and Financial Intelligence Analysis Unit, as well as journalists and civil society activists.

According to Mr. Casa, the MEPs will now be waiting for the Commission to respond, pointing out that if there is no action, a number of options were available to them, including making the call on the Commission during plenary.

“But more concretely we could also use a particular mechanism to draft the directive ourselves and send it to the Commission to propose. We can do this under a provision of the Treaty on the Functioning of the European Union.

“What is certain is that we are determined and committed to push for this legislation for as long as necessary,” Mr Casa said.

On the other recommendations in the report – mainly those calling on the European Banking Authority (EBA) and the European Central Bank (ECB) to assess whether the MFSA has fulfilled its obligations and to investigate whether Pilatus Bank holding a licence requires an intervention – Mr Casa said this was a different situation.

While the request to the ECB to take action had originally come from him alone, it was now the European Parliament which was making such calls on both the ECB and the EBA, the MEP explained.

“It should be the MFSA of its own volition that does what should have been done ages ago and revokes Pilatus’ license.

“On my part I will be communicating with the ECB again in the coming week, as I have received further evidence confidentially which needs to be passed on to them,” Mr Casa went on.

On a national level, the report points out that keeping politicians suspected of money laundering in office affects the government’s credibility, fuels a perception of impunity and could result in further damage to State interests by enabling the continuation of criminal activity.

When questioned on Friday about the recommendation to remove those named in the Panama Papers, Prime Minister Joseph Muscat said simply: “We take our decisions”.

He added that the MEPs who travelled to the island on the fact-finding mission had decided what they were going to say even before coming to Malta.

LuxLeaks upcoming court decision – quote from Benedek Jávor

Tomorrow (Thursday 23 November), the High Court in Luxembourg will rule on the appeal of the LuxLeaks whisteblowers, Antoine Deltour and Raphael Halet, plus journalist Edouard Perrin.

In March, Antoine Deltour was sentenced to a six-month suspended sentence and a €1,500 fine, while Raphael Halet received a €1,000 fine. They have appealed these sentences.

Journalist Edouard Perrin was originally acquitted, but the Luxembourgish authorities have appealed against this decision.

Greens/EFA transparency spokesperson Benedek Jávor comments:

“This trial shows why we need protection for whistleblowers. It is thanks to people like Antoine Deltour and Raphael Halet that the public was made aware of the many tax and fraud scandals to break in recent years. Their principled and brave action has been a major factor in bringing about much needed policy changes to tackle tax fraud, money laundering and corruption. Yet despite this, the EU doesn’t have rules in place to ensure their protection. The European Commission must urgently bring forward robust proposals to make sure that future whistleblowers don’t face the same ordeal.  

 “It is deeply regrettable that the journalist Edouard Perrin is also facing renewed conviction. In light of the murder of Maltese journalist Daphne Caruana Galizia, we have called for the creation of an annual prize to celebrate investigative journalism, which serves a crucial function in our democracies.”


(Image source: euractiv.com – Gwenael Piaser/Flickr)

EU Public Prosecutor To Fight Fraud

It’s Hungary’s version of a train to nowhere.

A train connecting two remote villages with links to the Prime Minister and largely funded by EU money.

Call it a coincidence.

Whether Hungary, a major recipient of EU funds, spends the money properly, is hard to find out, if the Hungarian authorities don’t investigate.

Benedek Jávor, a Hungarian member of the European Parliament from the Greens had this to say:

“The son-in-law of the Prime Minister, Mr Istvan Tiborc, was investigated by Olaf (the European Anti-Fraud Office) regarding some public light projects and the Hungarian public prosecutor did not investigate in a proper way in these cases, and finally nothing was done, nothing really effective was done in those cases.

But in Hungary we know dozens and dozens of cases where politically-related corruption cases are not properly investigated.”

To investigate potential fraud, the EU decided to establish the EU Prosecutor’s Office.

But 8 members are refusing to participate, prompting a warning from Brussels.

“The states which have a lot of EU money or will have in the future budgetary period, they should be under more control and there should be more preventive measures to protect the taxpayers’ money”, says Věra Jourová, the EU Justice Commissioner.

While in the states which are participating in the EU Prosecutor’s Office, there could be simplified rules without so much control and audit. “

The EU Prosecutor will have exclusive and EU-wide jurisdiction to deal with suspicions of criminal behaviour.

Report on the protection of whistleblowers

The European Parliament has today voted in favour of a report on the protection of whistleblowers. Please see below a quote from Greens/EFA transparency spokesperson Benedek Jávor, alongside a short update on activity currently underway on whistleblower protection at EU level.

“The European Parliament has once again called on the Commission to propose a horizontal directive to ensure the proper protection of whistleblowers across the EU. The Greens have been pushing for EU-wide legislation that would protect whistleblowers in all areas of EU competence. This way, citizens across Europe will be able to speak up about environmental crimes, human rights violations and other wrongdoing without fear of reprisal.

“We also want to see the establishment of an independent body to receive alerts about budgetary fraud affecting the EU. Whistleblowers play a crucial role in preventing and uncovering fraud and mismanagement of the EU budget and there needs to be a secure channel for them to share vital information.”



Since the Greens/EFA group launched a proposal for a draft EU Directive in May, the Commission has faced increased calls to act to protect whistleblowers. A coalition of almost 80 NGOs and trade unions was launched in Autumn to push for whistleblower legislation in Europe. The Financial Affairs Council called on the Commission to assess the scope for further action to protect whistleblowers in October.

The Commission is due to launch a public consultation on whistleblower protection in March, and recently published an Inception Impact Assessment in which they analyse the impact that a lack of whistleblower protection has on the EU market, on human rights and on the environment. The Commission is currently working on a complete Impact Assessment, with results expected before the summer.

In addition to the report from the Budgetary Control Committee voted today, the European Parliament is working on another initiative report in the Legal Affairs Committee, which will go beyond the scope of EU financial affairs. Following some disagreement between the JURI Committee and Conference of Presidents on who should be the rapporteur for the file, a final decision on the matter is still pending.

ITCO, UNODC and GRECO say to European Commission: Open Up !

Strasbourg, 14 December 2016

Today, representatives from the UN Office on Drugs and Crime, the Group of States against Corruption (GRECO) of the Council of Europe and the transparency intergroup of the European Parliament (ITCO) appeal on the European Commission to finally start reporting about its anti-corruption policies.

Co-chair of the ITCO-intergroup, Dennis de Jong: ́ We were told by the European Commission that early this year, the European Parliament would receive its second anti-corruption report. In the meantime, all we received was a disappointing letter from Vice-President Timmermans that the report would be submitted in due course and that it would not contain a section on the internal anti-corruption policies of the European institutions themselves. I therefore welcome the idea of asking GRECO to submit its evaluation on anti-corruption policies of the EU and its Member States, so that the Commission can finally make some pro gress in this regard ́.

The appeal also addresses the concerns of UNODC and GRECO. De Jong: ́I t is embarrassing that until now the Commission has refrained from participating in the Implementation Review Mechanism under the UN Convention against Corruption, to which the EU is a party. I praise the patience of UNODC and its offer the assist the Commission in this respect. I urge the Commission to step up its efforts and to set the right example to the international community, instead of lagging behind as it did until now. Similarly, the EP should receive as soon as possible a full legal analysis of the obstacles the Commission is facing in becoming a party to the GRECO-mechanism of the Council of Europe. Also in this regard, sw ift progress has to be made ́.

Appeal on European Commission: Open Up!

  1. We are concerned about the lack of progress made by the European Commission in respect of its reporting activities on anti-corruption policies and measures, not only of Member States, but also of the EU-institutions themselves.
  2. We are disappointed that the second anti-corruption report of the European Commission, originally due for early this year, has not come out yet and we call upon the Commission to provide the European Parliament with a comprehensive report, including measures taken by the EU-institutions themselves, without further delay.
  3. We invite the Commission to examine ways to speed up the preparations for EU-membership of GRECO, the Council of Europe ́s mechanism to monitor compliance of its members (including all EU Member States) with the organisation’s anti-corruption standards. Similarly, we call upon the Commission to speed up the preparations for its participation in the Implementation Review Mechanism of the UN Convention against Corruption (UNCAC). We understand that there may be legal obstacles to overcome, but we demand transparency in this respect and invite the Commission to publish a legal analysis of the problems and possible solutions.
  4. In the meantime, we invite the Commission to explore, together with GRECO, possibilities for developing a pilot project, in which the EU participates, on a purely voluntary basis, in GRECO ́s review process in order to become acquainted with the procedures.
  5. We note that the Commission stated as one of the reasons for not being able to report on anti-corruption policies and measures that it cannot really critically evaluate its own measures. We therefore invite GRECO to offer support in this respect by providing the Commission with a targeted evaluation.
  6. We recall that in its Resolution of 25 October 2016, the European Parliament called upon the Commission to meet its reporting obligations under the UN Convention against Corruption to which the EU has become a party, and also to do its utmost to contribute financially to the technical assistance programme of the UN in the context of the Convention.
  7. We welcome the offer made by UNODC to assist the Commission with fulfilling its reporting obligations and with participating in the Implementation Review Mechanism of the UNCAC, so that the Commission could make itself acquainted with the monitoring procedures.
  8. The Members of the European Parliament, participating in the Intergroup Integrity, Transparency, Corruption and Organised Crime stand ready to engage in a meaningful dialogue with the European Commission on all of these issues, together with representatives from the Council of Europe and the UNODC.

Joint appeal of the ITCO intergroup and the UNOCD.