Brussels, 1 July 2014: On the occasion of the first plenary session of the new European Parliament, Transparency International calls on MEPs to set new standards of integrity and transparency over the next five years. To date, 93 individual MEPs and 18 national political parties have signed the Transparency International EU Anti-Corruption Pledge, committing to greater integrity and transparency in EU law-making, prevention of corruption in EU funding and better protection for whistleblowers across Europe. The full list of MEPs who have signed this pledge can be seen here.
“The stakes are high”, said Carl Dolan, Director of the Transparency International EU Office. “The EU’s ability to tackle corruption effectively will have a large bearing on whether the next five years will be a period of recovery or stagnation. Public policy and public money need to be put to work for public and not private interests. The European Parliament has proved to be an effective political actor and now needs to put its weight behind the fight against corruption in the EU.”
The European Commission estimates that €120Bn is lost to corruption each year in the EU. Transparency International’s recent study of the integrity of EU institutions has highlighted major flaws in the transparency of the legislative process at EU level, including the absence of a mandatory lobby register and a lack of information on key negotiations between lawmakers.
“The integrity of law-making at EU level needs to be above suspicion”, said Dolan. “This is why we are asking Parliament – under the leadership of President Schulz – to follow the lead of the MEPs who signed the pledge and be clear about who is influencing EU policies. A ‘legislative footprint’ should be attached to each European Parliament report, detailing all the relevant input received regarding a piece of legislation ”.
 A legislative footprint is a document that identifies all relevant input from stakeholders. Published as an annex to legislative reports, it could potentially provide insight into who gave input into draft legislation. It helps to ensure that interest groups’ influence on policy-making is not disproportionate, which could otherwise lead to undue influence