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EU enlargement official says one of the priorities facing Bosnia in the next few months is getting the state anti-corruption agency up and running.
Paola Pampaloni, head of the Department for Bosnia in the European Commission's Directorate-General for Enlargement, said it was important for the country to put the state anti-corruption agency into real operation.
Though set up more than two years ago it remains underpowered and underfunded and so unable to tackle corruption in the country.
Pampaloni was speaking in Sarajevo on March 19 to lawmakers from the state and entity parliaments and from Brcko District.
She stated that strengthening the agency in Bosnia was a key issue that would need reporting on in June, which is why it was a priority to have a director and other staff fully up and running.
“The agency was legally created but as with many issues in Bosnia – once there is a law there are sometimes difficulties in having it completely implemented,” Pampaloni said.
She also said it was important that the anti-corruption agency obtained adequate financial resources. Currently the agency has only a director, two deputies and a few administrative staff.
The state government, under pressure from the European Union, adopted a law setting up the state agency as a key requirement to obtain visa liberalization at the end of the 2010.
But the agency was never completely established, largely because there has not been a proper state budget in two years.
Bosnia's state institutions have been functioning on the basis of so-called temporary financing due to the inability of the state government to adopt the budget.
In June Bosnia will get another European Commission progress report, mapping the country's position on its EU membership path.
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