BY NIKOLAJ NIELSEN
BRUSSELS – Corruption and lack of transparency are endemic throughout the EU, with direct links to the economic crisis.
The damning conclusion of a major study by the Berlin-based NGO, Transparency International (TI), was put forward at a hearing in the European Parliament in Brussels on Wednesday (6 June).
“Europe by and large fails the test,” said Corbus de Swardt, managing editor of TI.
In Greece and Portugal, corruption is so deeply ingrained it poses a direct threat to democratic legitimacy and jeopardises economic recovery, it said.
Greece, Portugal, Italy and Spain have “serious deficits in public sector accountability, and deep rooted problems of inefficiency, malpractice and corruption, which are neither sufficiently controlled nor sanctioned,” it added.
Costas Bakouris, chair of TI Greece, told EUobserver: “Corruption created all the elements of the financial problems in Greece … [It] has imbued the mentality of the people and the institutions of the country.”
That last quote sounds like the US!
– Lee Adler