An independent anti-corruption agency to be set up in Armenia
Armenia has decided to set up a new anti-corruption agency that will work on corruption prevention issues – Suren Krmoyan, Deputy Justice Minister of Armenia, told journalists.
“A bill on the elaboration of anti-corruption legislation has already been drafted and brought for public debate. The bill will be submitted to the Armenian government for approval in the upcoming months. It provides for setting up an independent agency that will be vested with ample powers and will deal with corruption prevention,” said Krmoyan.
The issue has stirred up stormy debates in opposition, public organizations and authorities.
Gevorg Kostanyan, an MP from the ruling majority group, ex-General Prosecutor, says there is no need for setting up a new agency: “We may establish a dozen such agencies, but it will hardly improve the efficiency of anti-corruption measures.”
As Artak Zeynalyan, a human rights activist and MP from the ‘Yelk’ opposition faction pointed out in this regard, he doesn’t support the idea of setting up additional structures with flamboyant and splashy names: “Personally I support the idea of vesting the Anti-Corruption Council with relevant powers, so that it could perform its functions at full.”
Meanwhile, the Head of the EU Delegation to Armenia, Piotr Świtalsk, stressed that ‘if there is no adequate response to corruption in Armenia, it’s unlikely that there will be any significant EU investments in the Armenian economy.’
According to the EU Ambassador, the Armenian government issued guarantees last year that it was ready to intensify bilateral cooperation in the anti-corruption filed, as well as in some other spheres.