Asset Declarations for Public Officials: A Tool to Prevent Corruption


Publication date
28 March 2011


Fighting Corruption in Eastern Europe and Central Asia

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Many countries around the world have introduced systems of asset declarations for public officials in order to prevent corruption. These systems vary greatly from country to country. The impact of such systems on the actual level of corruption is not well known.

This study provides a systematic analysis of the existing practice in the area of asset declarations in Eastern Europe and Central Asia, and in some OECD member states in Western Europe and North America. It examines the key elements of asset declaration systems, such as policy objectives, legal frameworks and the institutional arrangements; the categories of public officials who are required to submit declarations, and types of required information; procedures for verifying declared information, sanctions for violations, and public disclosure. The study also discusses the cost-effectiveness and overall usefulness of declaration systems. It includes four case studies covering Lithuania, Romania, Spain and Ukraine, and many additional country examples and references.


The study presents policy recommendations on the key elements of asset declaration systems. These recommendations will be useful for national governments and international organisations engaged in development, reform and assessment of asset declarations systems on a country level.

Table of contents


Part I. Policy Principles and Recommendations for Public Official Asset Declaration
-Why introduce asset declaration systems?
-Which legal framework should be chosen?
-One regulation for all officials, or different regulations for various categories?
-Which institution should be responsible?
-Who should be obliged to declare assets?
-What information should be declared?
-How should asset declarations be collected?
-How should asset declarations be verified?
-Which sanctions are needed to enforce asset declarations regimes?
-Which information should be open to the general public and other public institutions?
-How should the declarations system be evaluated?

Part II. Analysis of Existing Asset Declaration Practices
Chapter 1. Historical Background and International Standards
Chapter 2. Purposes of the Declaration Systems
Chapter 3. Legal Basis and Institutional Arrangements
Chapter 4. Subjects of Declaration Systems
Chapter 5. Scope and Content of the Declarations
Chapter 6. Processing of the Declarations
Chapter 7. Liability and Sanctions
Chapter 8. Public Disclosure
Chapter 9. Evaluation of the Declaration Systems

Part III. Asset Declaration Case Studies
Chapter 10. Asset Declaration in Lithuania
Chapter 11. Asset Declaration in Romania
Chapter 12. Asset Declaration in Spain
Chapter 13. Asset Declaration in Ukraine


See also