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Meeting of the EACN

EACN MeetingA meeting of the EU contact-point network against corruption (EACN) took place in Brussels from 4 to 5 February 2010, and was attended by nearly 40 participants from 19 EU Member States.

The event was organised by the European Commission and co-hosted by the European Parliament. The Head of the Unit "Fight against organised crime” in the DG JLS, Jakub Boratynski, and the President of EACN, Martin Kreutner, opened the conference and Raluca Pruna of the DG JLS updated the members of the network on the latest developments at EU level by presenting the Stockholm Programme. This roadmap of the European Commission contains, inter alia, indicators to measure anti-corruption efforts in the EU Member States and to establish a comprehensive anti-corruption policy.

Martin Kreutner pointed out that, in order to further develop the EACN, which was established in 2008 as new formalised network on the basis of the achievements of and under the umbrella of the informal EPAC (European Partners Against Corruption) network, cooperation between the EACN and the EU Member States was very important. In addition, he emphasised that one of the main challenges for the EACN was to bring together and enhance cooperation between its member institutions of different backgrounds and jurisdictions in order to exchange best practices and gain added value.

Subsequently, MEP Monica Macovei presented a written declaration of the European Parliament on the EU’s efforts in combating corruption. She stressed that international cooperation and awareness-raising measures were the key elements of the fight against corruption. Jakub Boratynski’s likewise addressed the meeting, discussing among other things, the financial aspects and funding opportunities concerning the EU anti-corruption efforts. In this context, he underlined the European Commission’s will to financially support projects of the EACN.

On the second day, two separate workshops were held. The first workshop, on the history and prospects of the EACN, was chaired by Martin Kreutner and Joanna Beczala of the DG JLS. In the second workshop, headed by Raluca Pruna of the DG JLS, future mechanisms for the evaluation of anti-corruption policies in the EU were discussed. One of the principal conclusions of the two workshops was to avoid bureaucracy and duplication between EPAC, EACN and, e.g., GRECO, the OECD and the Council of Europe. Furthermore, it was agreed to concentrate on the implementation of the existing international tools and conventions as well as on strengthening cooperation with the already existing evaluation bodies.

At the end of the conference, the participants decided to hold a follow-up meeting in June or July 2010. On behalf of the EACN, Martin Kreutner thanked the European Commission and the European Parliament for hosting this  event.

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