Commission's draft ethics code under fire

Publication date: 
Tuesday, January 18, 2011
Media title: 

Draft rules governing the behaviour of EU commissioners have come under fire from transparency groups, which accused the European Commission of not doing enough to address "revolving door" issues.


The new Code explicitly bans former commissioners from taking on lobbying or advocacy work on issues related to their portfolio for 18 months after leaving their position. But it fails to precisely define what constitutes "lobbying" or a "conflict of interest". "This Code will not stop the type of scandal that we saw last autumn, where former Commissioners Günter Verheugen and Charlie McCreevy took up lobby jobs with companies including RyanAir and the Royal Bank of Scotland," said Friends of the Earth Europe's Paul de Clerck, speaking on behalf of ALTER-EU (the Alliance for Lobbying Transparency and Ethics Regulation).