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Saturday, November 27, 2021

State Department warns potential investors in Macedonia about the high level of corruption

In its latest Investment climate report, the US State Department warns about the high level of corruption in Macedonia and the public disappointment with the deteriorating situation in this regard.

“…Macedonia has laws intended to counter bribery, abuse of official position, and conflicts-of-interest, and government officials and their close relatives are legally required to disclose their income and assets. However, enforcement of anti-corruption laws has at times been weak and selectively targeted government critics and low-level offenders. There have been credible allegations of corruption in law enforcement, the judiciary, and many other sectors… Transparency International ranked North Macedonia 111th out of 180 countries in the 2020 Corruption Perceptions Index, a drop of 5 places, for a lack of government efforts to combat corruption and conflict of interest in public administration. The resulting public disappointment and pressure over the high index score, in part, triggered the Deputy Prime Minister for Anti-Corruption to introduce a Code of Ethics for members of the government and all other officials appointed by the government, under which they must commit to transparent and responsible work, the 2021 report notes.

The report cites the arrest of former Special Prosecutor Katica Janeva on racketeering charges which ended her office, but the cases that were initiated there were resumed by other prosecutors.

“Many businesses operating in (North) Macedonia, including some U.S. businesses, identified corruption as a problem in government tenders and in the judiciary, the report also warns potential investors in Macedonia.

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