Corporate Europe Observatory

Exposing the power of corporate lobbying in the EU

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Revolving door provides privileged access

Revolving door provides priviledged access: Why the European Commission needs a stricter code of conduct

This new report by the Alliance for Lobbying Transparency and Ethics Regulation (ALTER-EU) report reviews the evolution of the Code of Conduct for Commissioners and explains how we have arrived at such a lax system of oversight. This report then analyses, on the basis of internal Commission documents released under freedom of information rules, six cases to illustrate some of the deep-seated problems with the current procedure. It concludes with a detailed assessment of the Commission’s very weak draft proposal for a new Code of Conduct and ALTER-EU’s recommendations to effectively tackle the revolving door problem. The European Commission has for too long chosen to ignore public concern about these issues. It is now high time to act in the public interest and introduce a new Code of Conduct that secures the highest ethical standards and prevents conflicts of interest.

This new report by the Alliance for Lobbying Transparency and Ethics Regulation (ALTER-EU) report reviews the evolution of the Code of Conduct for Commissioners and explains how we have arrived at such a lax system of oversight. This report then analyses, on the basis of internal Commission documents released under freedom of information rules, six cases to illustrate some of the deep-seated problems with the current procedure. It concludes with a detailed assessment of the Commission’s very weak draft proposal for a new Code of Conduct and ALTER-EU’s recommendations to effectively tackle the revolving door problem.

This new report by the Alliance for Lobbying Transparency and Ethics Regulation (ALTER-EU) report reviews the evolution of the Code of Conduct for Commissioners and explains how we have arrived at such a lax system of oversight. This report then analyses, on the basis of internal Commission documents released under freedom of information rules, six cases to illustrate some of the deep-seated problems with the current procedure. It concludes with a detailed assessment of the Commission’s very weak draft proposal for a new Code of Conduct and ALTER-EU’s recommendations to effectively tackle the revolving door problem. The European Commission has for too long chosen to ignore public concern about these issues. It is now high time to act in the public interest and introduce a new Code of Conduct that secures the highest ethical standards and prevents conflicts of interest.

 

The corporate lobby tour

CEO documents a variety of revolving door cases including a commissioner, MEPs and officials with links or interests in TTIP.
The prospective EU-US trade deal could be the world's biggest such treaty. The revolving door between public and private sectors is helping to grease the wheels of the TTIP corporate lobby. This phenomenon creates great potential for conflicts of interest, and demonstrates the synergies between business interests and the Commission, UK government, and others when it comes to trade negotiations.
The way in which the Commission has appointed the head of its “in-house think-tank” has demonstrated its woefully inadequate conflict of interest assessment for new appointments, says Corporate Europe Observatory. The conflict of interest assessment applied to the former chief of the Lisbon Council, Ann Mettler as head of the new European Political Strategy Center (EPSC) does not appear to have explored her close cooperation with some of the biggest corporate players in the digital and technology market. In CEO's view, this casts serious doubts on the independence of the advice that is to be given to President Juncker and his college of commissioners.
The Alliance for Lobby Transparency and Ethics Regulation (ALTER-EU) has today launched two new publications aimed at improving ethics and transparency in the European Parliament.
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The prospective EU-US trade deal could be the world's biggest such treaty. The revolving door between public and private sectors is helping to grease the wheels of the TTIP corporate lobby. This phenomenon creates great potential for conflicts of interest, and demonstrates the synergies between business interests and the Commission, UK government, and others when it comes to trade negotiations.

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