Uzbekistan needs to push harder on anti-corruption efforts, says OECD

5 Nov 15

The OECD has urged Uzbekistan to strengthen public sector integrity in the drive to rid the country of widespread corruption.

The central Asian nation and former soviet republic has made a number of gains towards eliminating corruption since signing up to the OECD’s Istanbul Action Plan in 2010.

However, the nation suffers from endemic corruption in the upper echelons of politics and throughout the public and private sectors. It was ranked 81 out of 99 countries participating in the World Justice Project’s 2014 Rule of Law Index.

The OECD’s latest report on anti-corruption reforms in Uzbekistan marks the third round of its monitoring of implementation of the Istanbul Anti-Corruption Plan. It commends the country’s progress so far but says Uzbekistan now needs to boost its efforts if the fight against corruption is going to be successful.

The report found that “negative conclusions” drawn by academia were blocking the adoption of draft laws that would criminalise corruption and bring national legislation in line with international standards. These laws should be adopted without delay, the OECD said.

Similarly, draft documents to reform the public sector, such as codes of ethics, show promise but still need to be put into practice, and in some key areas, such as the transparency of public sector pay systems, the OECD report said “no significant steps had been taken”.

It did however welcome Uzbekistan’s introduction of anti-corruption audits by the country’s Accounts Chamber and called for the country to go further and introduce internal financial controls including internal audit. 

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