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Institution of declaration being improved

20/11/2019

The Ministry of Justice has submitted a draft of the Law "On making supplements and amendments to the Law "On public service"" and the Law "On making an amendment to the Constitutional Law "Electoral Code"" for public consideration; the Draft proposes:

1.     expanding the scope of declarants;       

2.     introducing the institution of declaration of expenses;

3.     specifying the types of property subject to declaration;

4.     reviewing the information submitted when declaring property;

5.     specifying the information on borrowings and loans received by officials.

 

 

Thus:

  • the list of declarant officials has been reviewed under the Draft. It is proposed to envisage the obligation of declaration for members of the councils of elders of communities with populations of 15 000 and more and for secretaries of the staff as well. At the same time, it is proposed to set an obligation for submitting a declaration to the Commission for the Prevention of Corruption for deputies of the National Assembly of the Republic of Armenia, head of community, member of the council of elders of a community, candidates running in the elections of mayor of Yerevan and member of the Council of Elders of Yerevan, and for political parties (alliances of political parties) running in elections.
  • To facilitate disclosure of financial resources of an official in Armenia and abroad, the Draft proposes to envisage a requirement for an official to give a letter of authorisation to an authorised body to make inquiries regarding relevant information on behalf of the official. The sample form of the letter of authorisation will be prescribed by the Government of the Republic of Armenia. Introduction of this regulation will provide the opportunity to save the resources of the authorised body, and the authorised body will be provided with the opportunity to receive reliable information. During declaration of property, under the Draft, the declarant is obliged to submit information regarding property abroad as well.
  • The Draft proposes to set a requirement for declaring the immovable property, vehicles and valuable property that the official actually possesses, which will provide the opportunity to meet the aforementioned objectives regarding declaration.
  • It is also proposed to expand the scope of information submitted during declaration of property. Information regarding immovable property, vehicle, value of transaction for acquisition of securities and the other party of the transaction will also be submitted; a requirement for submitting relevant information on bank deposit and bank account has also been set. It is proposed to lower the monetary threshold for valuable property set by the Law.
  • It is proposed to introduce the institution of declaration of expenses. It is also proposed to define the types of expenses subject to declaration and the scope of information regarding expenses that must be submitted. Thanks to this, the authorised body will have the opportunity to receive complete information about the property status of the declarant official and will help reveal potential violations.
  • It is proposed to distinguish between certain types of income subject to declaration, particularly credits and loans received. This is conditioned by the differences between the two specified types of income in terms of content. The Draft proposes to lower the monetary threshold set with respect to part 9 of Article 41 of the Law.

With this amendment, it is expected to improve the institution of declaration, providing the opportunity to ensure transparency of the activities of declarant officials. The revised scope of information subject to declaration and of persons obliged to submit a declaration will ensure complete information regarding the property status of the declarant official; this is an effective tool for revealing potential violations.

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