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Scaling up efforts on anti-corruption in Iraq

Iraq - Tuesday, November 30, 2021

As the International Anti-Corruption Day approached, the International Community beefed up its efforts to fight corruption in Iraq while an increasing level of investigation and trials by Iraqi authorities was reflected in the media.

The German development agency, Deutsche Gesellschaft für Internationale Zusammenarbeit (GIZ), and the Federal Commission of Integrity are poised to announce a new Memorandum of Understanding heralding further anti-corruption support in the financial sector. UNDP’s Anti-Corruption & Arbitration Initiatives (ACAI), Security Sector Reform (SSR), and Anti-Corruption and Integrity in the Arab Countries project completed a series of trainings and workshops on investigation, corruption risk assessment, anti-corruption legislation assessment and measurement of corruption through Corruption Perception Index.

The workshop on measuring corruption through Corruption Perception Index themed on a better understanding of Iraq's rate in Transparency International's CPI and was held in Erbil and attended by representatives of the Federal and Kurdistan region’s Commissions of Integrity. Since 1995, Transparency International has issued an annual report on the World Corruption Perceptions Index. Since then, this indicator has been the subject of interest, discussion, and criticism by various actors, as CPI has many flaws, shortcomings, and gaps. It ranges from significant thematic defects, which undoubtedly affect the calculation process, to purely mathematical flaws that must be considered and addressed to develop and improve the quality and accuracy of the indicator and thus enable it to achieve its goal further. 

In this framework, the regional project on Anti-Corruption and Integrity in the Arab Countries (ACIAC) developed the "Analysis of Iraq's results in the CPI and ways to develop it" report. ACIAC presented various problems of all kinds to reveal the basic reasons behind the unconvincing figures attributed by the index to many countries. Besides that fact, Iraq ranks 160th among 180 countries in TI's Corruption Perception Index 2020, remaining one of the worst-performing countries among the Arab States, preceding only Libya, Sudan, Yemen, Syria, and Somalia, and tied with Comoros. And the overall score change has been +3 since 2012, which means anti-corruption reform remains an urgent need for Iraqi society.

During the anti-corruption workshop in Erbil, UNDP experts discussed with almost 30 representatives of the Federal and KRI Commissions of Integrity how to make positive changes and influence Iraq's TI CPI rate.

*Credit: this article is based on excerpts from the monthly newsletter of UNDP Iraq’s anti-corruption project #02 (November 2021).


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