CPI 2021 for Eastern Europe and Central Asia:…

Kosovo (39) has seen peaceful power transitions between governments in recent years. Its parliament was the only one in the Western Balkans – and one of only five across Europe – that did not transfer decision-making powers to the executive when the pandemic hit. The country has shown a real desire to fight corruption by investigate potentially corrupt leaders and adopting a rule of law strategy. However, the government must ensure public appointments are timelytransparent and impartial to make the necessary improvements to public procurement processes.

After several years of decline, North MacedoniaThe score of (39) has jumped 4 points since last year. The country has taken steps to prosecute senior officials for corruption and strengthen independent oversight institutions. The government has also adopted an agenda and an action plan against corruption – developed in consultation with civil society – which included explicit measures to fight organized crime, reform elections and the judiciary, and fight nepotism, cronyism and influence in public hiring practices.

Following the velvet revolution of 2018, Armenia (49) initially achieved both significant democratic improvements and positive progress against corruption, climbing 15 points on the CPI over the past decade. But despite the progress, in 2021 promises of anti-corruption and judicial reforms are blocked in the wake of the political and economic crisis triggered by the pandemic and the resurgence of conflict in the Nagorno-Karabakh region.

In Moldova (36, up 5 points since 2017), the July 2021 parliamentary elections were met with optimism – the pro-European party, which campaigns on an anti-corruption platform, won a majority and formed a government led by two women. The government must now deliver on its promises to depoliticize anti-corruption bodies and genuinely reform the country’s judiciary.

Uzbekistan (28) is steadily progressing on the CPI, gaining 11 points since 2012. The country is setting an example in Central Asia by showing some signs of democratization and sanctioning corruption and abuse of power within government agencies. In recent years, the country has undertaken a number of key reforms in anti-corruption policies, making prevention one of its priorities. Despite these positive changes, Uzbekistan remains an authoritarian state whose activists and civil society face persecution, interrogation and dismissal.

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