The intergroup on Integrity, Transparency, Corruption and Organised crime was established in the European Parliament in January 2015.
The Bureau of the intergroup consists out of the following members:
Members of the Bureau:
The intergroup on ITCO
The 2014 Eurobarometer on Corruption points out that a high majority of European citizens perceives corruption as a very serious issue:
• 76% of Europeans regards corruption as a widespread phenomenon in their country
• 56% of Europeans thinks that the level of corruption increased over the past three years.
• 80% of Europeans believes that corruption exists in the national public institutions
• 70% of Europeans considers that corruption exists within the Union’s institutions.
In 2013, the European Commission launched its first anti-corruption report.
It showed that corruption is a persistent problem across the 28 Member States of the European Union. It may undermine the effective use of European and national public funds, it may distort competition and increase prices and may deprive, in particular, the most vulnerable in our societies from access to public services.
The Commission report did not deal with the transparency, accountability and integrity in EU institutions…
But in this respect as well, much can and should be improved, linking anti-corruption with the fight against organised crime, money laundering and tax fraud, tax evasion and tax avoidance. Particularly, corruption money laundering and organised crime are closely interlinked. Various groups of organised crime have spread their activities throughout Europe both controlling illegal markets and infiltrating the legal economy with investments in many business sectors. With the intergroup we can push for a comprehensive approach, and for better instruments to fight these phenomena at a European level.
Oversight over the budget of the European Union is a key task of the European Parliament.
In order to fulfil its mandate in this respect, the European Parliament itself should be seen as a leading example in issues relating to transparency, accountability and integrity.
Non-governmental organisations, such as Transparency International, Libera, Restarting the future and ALTER-EU, have asked MEPs to sign up to their respective pledges against corruption and organised crime, and in favour of safeguarding integrity.
Many of the newly elected MEPs did so, indicating wide support for these objectives.
Thus, the creation of an intergroup can be seen as an important answer to these calls and help in putting these issues high on the EP’s agenda.
It would constitute evidence of the determination of the European Parliament to stand for transparency, accountability and integrity.
The main tasks of the intergroup could be summarised as follows:
- Bringing together available expertise on matters relating to corruption, integrity and organised crime in the EU-Member States, as well as in the EU-institutions;
- Organising informal meetings in the European Parliament and thus providing for targeted exchanges among all relevant stakeholders, including academics and NGOs;
- Issuing of appeals to the European Commission, the Council and the relevant committees in the EP, whenever information reaches the intergroup which requires urgent action;
- Write open or private letters to authorities in EU institutions, in Member States, or in the countries the EU works with (‘third countries’) to manifest MEPs’ position on a certain topic;
- Work for new initiatives and further steps from the Commission on anti-corruption policies in the Member States and the institutions;
- Preparing written questions to the Commission and the Council, whenever relevant;
- Drafting of proposals for resolutions of the European Parliament;
- Work with members of the Intergroup on amendments to reports to include transparency and integrity concerns and policies in formal EU texts;
- Push for a minimum common standard on the protection of whistleblowers both at European and national level.
Rules of engagement
Every member of the ITCO intergroup should have signed two of the three pledges: