Pressure group in call for new transparency rules

Publication date: 
Friday, May 13, 2011
Martin Banks
Media title: 
The Parliament Magazine

[ALTER-EU has] voiced fresh concern about a new code of conduct for former EU commissioners.

The code, recently adopted by the commission, is designed to improve transparency amid concerns that some ex-commissioners were moving straight into top consultancy posts after leaving the executive.


Alter-EU says the commission's ad hoc ethical committee "must be fully independent" and composed of experts on public administration ethics, such as academics and national government ethics regulators.

The group also says the committee should "actively scrutinise possible" conflicts of interest, including making contact with the planned employer and taking other proactive steps. It says, "Decisions should be available online and be searchable, sortable and downloadable. We would also like to point out that the conflicts of interest rules for commission staff also have several shortcomings that create 'revolving door' problems. We would therefore recommend that you also review the staff regulations."

[Furthermore it calls for] introducing a cooling-off period with a clear ban on commission staff moving into jobs that involve lobbying or lobbying advice would be a "logical step" forward.