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TI: Czech Republic should regulate lobbying

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Prague, June 29 (CTK) – The Czech Republic should introduce the regulation of lobbying, following the model of the European Commission (EC), since it would limit corruption and make the legislative process more transparent, the Transparency International (TI) Czech branch told reporters Monday.

The Government Council for Coordination of Anti-corruption Fight has decided to prepare a draft legislation to regulate lobbying, TI Czech branch programme director Radim Bures said Monday.

The government and parliament should introduce the register of lobbyists and politicians as well as civil servants should be obliged to report their contacts with them.

A similar system can “filter” problematic meeting with lobbyists, Bures said.

Sanctions should be the threat of releasing unauthorised contacts with unregistered lobbyists, at least in the first phase, Bures said.

He added that the “the legislative trace” should also be registered, to enable to track down who had participated in the preparation of respective laws.

The Czech Republic is placed average in a comparison with another 19 European countries in the existing legal regulations or self-regulation concerning lobbying.

The result was positively influenced by the law on free access to information that really works in the Czech Republic, and the system of assessment of the impact of submitted bills, political scientist Petr Vymetal, from the University of Economics, said.

On the other hand, negative aspects are, apart from the lacking legal regulation of lobbying, low transparency of groups of advisers who help prepare decisions and draft bills, he added.

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