European Court of Justice to take final decision on public access to Council documents
Madrid, 2 October 2013 - The European Court of Justice (ECJ) will formally announce its final ruling on the Access Info v Council of the European Union court case on 17 October 2013, after four years of legal battle. The second instance ECJ will now have the final word on whether or not it is legitimate for the Council to systematically blank out the names of Member States in documents summarising legislative negotiations before handing them out to the public.
Quatlity of access to information laws around the world, www.rti-rating.org
28 September 2013, Halifax/Madrid - Access Info Europe (Spain) and the Centre for Law and Democracy (Canada) are today launching a report providing an analysis of the results and trends in the global RTI Rating, which assesses the legal framework for the right to information (RTI) in every country in the world which has adopted a national RTI law. A major finding of the report is that as international standards have developed laws have got stronger. At the same time, there is still a lot of room for improvement, with only 23 countries scoring more than 100 points.
"Our report shows that RTI laws have steadily improved over time, with the average score climbing from just 78 out of a possible total of 150 in 1995 to an average of 91 for the laws adopted since 2010," said Toby Mendel, Executive Director of the Centre for Law and Democracy. "This is probably due partly to the fact that later laws can build on the experience of earlier laws, and partly to the fact that there are now stronger and clearer international standards on this key issue."
Civil society groups warn UK Lobbying Bill is too weak on transparency
London, 9 September 2013 - Access Info Europe, together with 14 other civil society groups from the UK, is urging the British Government to redraft the proposed Lobbying Bill so that it provides the public with a genuine opportunity to scrutinise the activities of lobbyists.
The letter sent today to the British Prime Minister, David Cameron, calls for a more thorough transparency register which is not restricted to consultant lobbyists, but which would also include in-house lobbyists, big consultancies, and other entities that offer lobbying services such as think tanks.
UN Convention against Corruption
Call for action on right to information and company ownership transparency.
Madrid, 23 August 2013 – NGOs today urged parties to the UN Convention against Corruption (UNCAC) to take action to promote adoption of access to information laws and to increase the availability of information on beneficial ownership of private companies.
A letter sent today to members of the UNCAC Working Group on Prevention, by Access Info Europe and Global Financial Integrity together with the civil society UNCAC Coalition, urged priority action on transparency measures essential in the fight against corruption.
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