Transparency of the defense sector

Published December 3, 2015

Insufficient transparency of internal procedures and defense spending are the key challenges for anti-corruption in Lithuanian defense sector, according to “Transparency International” global survey, which assessed 21 NATO and 12 NATO partners’ readiness to prevent corruption in defense sector. Lithuania fell into the group of medium corruption risk and performed worse than Latvia and Poland.

The assessment highlighted the lack of publicly accessible information about Inspectorate General, which is responsible for internal control of corruption, work quality and results. It is also unclear how safe is the hotline through which any potential abuses can be reported.

Corruption remains a risk in defense budget spending. In order to increase Lithuania’s defense spending up to 2% of GDP it is recommended to ensure greater transparency in procurement and monitoring. In Lithuania, an increasing share of public procurement receives only one proposal of supplier. According to Public Procurement Office, in 2013 there were no open contests, and 43% of all procurements received only one offer. In 2014, there were also no open contests, and 57% of procurements received only one offer.

At the same time, the majority of assessed NATO members have a lack of parliamentary control in the trade of military equipment and in the performance assessment of intelligence institutions.

The study evaluated, how countries seek to avoid corruption in political, financial, personnel, military operations and acquisitions levels. The lowest corruption risk countries were assigned to group A, the highest – to group F. Lithuania fell into group C, Latvia and Poland – to group B. The United Kingdom is the only country, which fell into group A.

In 2015 assessment these NATO countries were assessed: United Kingdom, Belgium, Canada, Denmark, Germany, Latvia, the Netherlands, Norway, Poland, the USA, Bulgaria, Croatia, Czech Republic, France, Greece, Hungary, Italy, Lithuania, Spain, Portugal and Turkey.

NATO partners: Finland, Switzerland, Austria, Bosnia and Herzegovina, Georgia, Serbia, Sweden, Armenia, Ukraine, Afghanistan, Azerbaijan, Uzbekistan.

Study about defense sector transparency was performed by “Transparency International” researchers in the UK and Lithuania, and the results were sent to the Ministry of National Defense Republic of Lithuania. Representatives of the ministry had the opportunity to review and revise assessments of Lithuania.

For more information:

Sergejus Muravjovas, sergejus@transparency.lt, +37068997579.