MORE THAN HALF OF THE PARLIAMENTARIANS DECLARE THEIR MEETINGS DURING WORK HOURS

Published September 18, 2018

During the regular spring session of 2018, more than half (75) Lithuanian MPs made declarations regarding their meetings with interest groups and registered lobbyists – 30 politicians more than last year. In addition, this spring the parliamentarians declared 200 meetings more than the previous year (676 as compared to 475 in spring 2017). The information comes from research conducted by Transparency International Lithuania after reviewing the information on manosusitikimai.lt, official work calendars, and personal websites of the parliamentarians.

The highest number of meetings (65) were declared by Virginijus Sinkevičius, the Minister of Economy. Prime Minister Saulius Skvernelis declared 44 meetings, followed by Seimas Chairman Viktoras Pranckietis (38). The Minister of Health, Aurelijus Veryga, and Simonas Gentvilas, the member of the Liberal Movement group, both declared 29 meetings.

7 out of 10 of all meetings were declared by the members of Lithuanian Farmers and Greens Union political group (406 out of 676) and The Liberals Movement political group (87 out of 676).

Three fourths of the members of The Liberals Movement political group (77%) and the Lithuanian Social Democratic Party political group (75%), and two thirds of Lithuanian Farmers and Greens Union political group’s members (70%) publicly declared at least one meeting.

3 out of 7 Non-attached Members made their meetings public, followed by 10 out of 30 members of Homeland Union – Lithuanian Christian Democrat political group, and 3 out of 11 members of the Lithuanian Social Democratic Labour political group. 2 out of 8 members of the Electoral Action of Poles in Lithuania – Christian Families Alliance political group and 1 out of 7 members of the Order and Justice political group publicized their meetings.

The Electoral Action of Poles in Lithuania – Christian Families Alliance political group also declares its separate political group agenda, in which 4 meetings with the interest groups were publicized.

8 out of 15 Committee chairmen made public at least one meeting with an interest group. Only 3 out of 8 chairmen of political groups publicize their meetings with interest groups’ representatives.

The largest number of meetings was held with NGO representatives (221), business associations and businessmen (200), science (110), medicine (39), and religious communities (23) representatives.

8 Parliamentarians proclaimed their meetings with registered lobbyists (11). The number doubled compared to the meetings declared in spring session of 2017 (3).

For research purposes, the only information that was publicly available between 10th of March 2018 and 16th of August 2018 was taken from official working calendars, personal websites, and entries made in manosusitikimai.lt about the interest groups that the parliamentarians met with.

A short summary can be found here (in Lithuanian), and more information about the study here (in Lithuanian).

More information: Sergejus Muravjovas, sergejus@transparency.lt, +370 689 97579.