Latvia has fully or partially implemented all 17 recommendations made by the Council of Europe's Group of States against Corruption (GRECO) on preventing corruption and promoting integrity in central governments (top executive functions) and law enforcement agencies such as the State Police and State Border Guard. Latvia has thus become the second country to successfully conclude the GRECO Fifth Evaluation Round.
Latvia has implemented a number of activities to address GRECO recommendations to prevent corruption and promote integrity in the central government, State Police and State Border Guard. An integrity risk analysis of political officials in the executive branch has been carried out. Additionally, a mandatory requirement for political officials in government, other than cabinet members and parliamentary secretaries, to obtain authorisation to combine offices has been introduced. An obligation has also been introduced prohibiting freelance consultants to ministers from undertaking duties if this creates or may create a conflict of interest, or if the performance of duties could call into question the impartiality and neutrality of the consultants, and to report this to the minister.
GRECO welcomes the introduction of the Unified Portal for Drafting and Coordinating Legislation (the TAP portal), the public availability of the list of participants in Cabinet meetings and meetings of State Secretaries, as well as the systematic and timely publication of the results of public participation.
GRECO also commends the actions taken to improve the Code of Ethics of the State Police and State Border Guard and its application in practice. The Organisation recognises that both institutions have objective and transparent criteria in place to verify the integrity of staff and compliance with applicable ethical standards.
GRECO notes that Latvia has fully or partially implemented the recommendations made in 2018 and calls for continued progress in tackling corruption, particularly affecting political officials in the executive branch. The Organisation recommends that a systematic and thorough review of all declarations made by these officials be ensured, and that a code of ethics for the Cabinet of Ministers be developed and adopted. GRECO also urges Latvia to adopt amendments to the internal laws and regulations of the State Police and State Border Guard in order to establish a more balanced remuneration system in law enforcement agencies.
Latvia continues to implement the partially implemented recommendations and will continue to report on progress to GRECO.
The progress made by Latvian institutions in implementing the recommendations of the Fifth Evaluation Round was reviewed by GRECO at its 92nd Plenary Meeting. It took place from 28 November to 2 December 2022. Latvia expresses its gratitude to the representatives of the GRECO Secretariat and the international experts for cooperation in the preparation of the report. The GRECO evaluation report on Latvia is available on GRECO website.
GRECO's activities aim to improve the capacity of Council of Europe Member States to prevent corruption and to monitor the implementation of commitments made through the evaluation process. Latvia acceded to the Council of Europe Treaty establishing GRECO on 15 June 2000. The implementation of the obligations under the Agreement is coordinated in Latvia by the Corruption Prevention and Combating Bureau of Latvia (KNAB).