The large-scale corruption among the officials still remains the key problem in Ukraine. The support provided by the EU to Ukraine for the fight against corruption did not bring the expected results as the European Court of Auditors report states.
“For more than 20 years, the EU has been supporting Ukraine in its reform agenda. Tackling corruption, which is a major obstacle to a country’s development and runs counter to EU values, is an integral part of that. The EU has been trying to address corruption in Ukraine as a cross-cutting priority; it has channeled funds and efforts through a variety of sectors, from the competitive environment to the judiciary and civil society. But the support and measures put in place have not delivered the expected results, the auditors say,” the report states.
The document states that the corruption in Ukraine hinders competition and growth, as well as harms the democratic process. Dozens of billions of euros are lost as the result of corruption.
The EU noted that it has been aware of ties between the oligarchs, top officials, politicians, judicial bodies, and state enterprises for a long time. However, Europe could not develop a real strategy of fight against big corruption.
“For instance, illicit financial flows, including money-laundering, are addressed only at the margins. Nevertheless, the EU has supported many anti-corruption reforms and activities in Ukraine. In most cases, the degree of support depends on a number of conditions being met. But the Commission has often interpreted such requirements too loosely, leading to over-positive assessments. The auditors cite the visa-free system as an example. The operation of this system has not been reconsidered, even though two of the three conditions for EU support have not been achieved,” the report states.
The Court underlined that despite the European support, the oligarchs and vested interests continue to disrupt the supremacy of law in Ukraine and threatens the development of the country.
“Ukraine needs a focused and efficient strategy to tackle the power of oligarchs and diminish state capture. The EU can play a much more significant role than it has done so far,” member of the European Courts of Auditors Juhan Parts stated.
As we reported, the Verkhovna Rada of Ukraine has adopted in the second reading and in general the bill #5599 on de-oligarchization. 279 MPs supported the decision.
It is noted that " this law is aimed at overcoming the conflict of interest caused by the merger of politicians, media and big business, ensuring Ukraine's national security in economic, political and information spheres, protecting democracy, ensuring state sovereignty and avoiding manipulation of citizens with intentionally distorted information in order to gain access to resources owned by the Ukrainian people."