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Corruption still seen as Bulgaria's most pressing problem

Date: 27.04.2007

Bulgarians see corruption among magistrates and politicians as a major problem, despite reforms allegedly carried out to meet EU accession criteria.

The Centre for the Study of Democracy (CSD) presented its eighth annual corruption evaluation report on April 23.

According to the report, Bulgaria annually loses from corruption a sum equal to the yearly average of EU funds allocated to the country.

Over the past year Bulgaria lost nearly one billion leva from corruption practices related to public procurement.

People and businesses increasingly believe that corruption among members of Parliament, ministers and mayors is becoming more widespread.

Measures countering corruption have proved to be inefficient, people said. Statistics show that in Bulgaria it is more likely to be harmed in a traffic accident than to get punished for giving or receiving a bribe.

Most cases of corruption remain unpopular. Even if a trial is launched, it rarely ends with a proper verdict, the CSD report shows.

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