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Rule of law: First Annual Report

Rule of law: First Annual Report on the Rule of Law situation across the European Union

On 30 September 2020, the European Commission published its first EU-wide report on the rule of law. The report includes input from every EU Member State and covers four main pillars: national justice systems, anti-corruption frameworks, media pluralism and freedom, and other institutional issues related to the checks and balances essential to an effective system of democratic governance.

The aim of the new Rule of Law Report is to enlarge the existing EU toolbox with a new preventive tool and kick-start an inclusive debate and rule of law culture across the EU. It is part of the new annual rule of law cycle – the Rule of Law Mechanism. The Mechanism is a yearly cycle to promote the rule of law and prevent problems from emerging or deepening further. The goal is to focus on improving understanding and awareness of issues and significant developments, as well as to identify rule of law challenges and help EU Member States find solutions with support from the European Commission and the other Member States, as well as stakeholders including the Council of Europe’s Venice Commission.

At the request of the European Commission, the European Partners against Corruption (EPAC) and the European contact-point network against corruption (EACN) represented by their Board, also contributed a short summary of the networks' scope of work. In particular, the summary highlighted the objectives of the EPAC/EACN Working Group “EU Integrity” as well as the main outcome of the last Annual Professional Conference and General Assembly in Stockholm, namely the adoption of the Stockholm Declaration 2019.

For more information on the 2020 Rule of Law Report, please visit the European Commission’s website: https://ec.europa.eu/commission/presscorner/detail/en/ip_20_1756