Saturday, June 11, 2011

Ukraine: President - Ukraine Advances on Anti-Corruption Practices

SOURCE Worldwide News Ukraine

In the framework of fighting corruption, Ukraine has been taking a series of measures to prevent the spread of corrupt practices in the country. Occupying 134th position in the corruption rating of Transparency International, Ukraine now puts a lot of efforts to improve its international standing. The latest development was the Law of Ukraine On the Foundations of Prevention and Combating Corruption along with a number of other accompanying documents, which the President of Ukraine Viktor Yanukovych signed this week.

The Law is expected to be an advanced version of anti-corruption legislation that provides working mechanisms of corruption prevention used internationally. The Law contains new principles and effective mechanisms of corruption prevention, noted President Yanukovych at the National Anti-corruption Committee meeting on Wednesday June 8, 2011. For example, the law specifies that the President, Head of the Parliament, Prime Minister, Prosecutor General, ministers and other top officials will now be eligible for prosecution for corruption.

Having been an integral part of the Soviet political system, corruption is a tough plant to root up even nowadays. Ukrainian Constitution contains principles of corruption free political system and numerous Ukrainian laws make corruption illegal. Between 1995 and 2005 Ukraine ratified 11 international anti-corruption documents including the UN Convention against Corruption.

In 2005 international organizations the Financial Action Task Force and the Council of Europe pressed Ukraine to step up in its anti-corruption efforts. The Ukrainian Parliament made a resolution in 2006, but it was not until three years later that the Law was adopted.

The first iteration of the Law of Ukraine On the Foundations of Prevention and Combating Corruption was passed in 2009 only to be abrogated in December of 2010. The current version underwent a number of amendments and delays on its way to the President's table. Most changes involved income declarations - the final version of the law establishes a duty to declare both owned and rented property. It should be noted that the public went furious when the decision was made to delay adoption of the new version of the Law from April 2010 to January 2011.

The Law of Ukraine On the Foundations of Prevention and Combating Corruption comes into effect on July 1, 2011.