Czech state organs may begin publishing contracts online this fall

Slovakia, which requires contracts to be available on the internet, has seen cost-savings of about 10 percent, Czech MP says

Politics & Policy|Society
Brian Kenety | 21.05.2012

A number of Czech ministries and state entities such as the scandal-ridden Roads and Motorways Directorate (ŘSD) may begin publishing all contracts with third parties on the internet as of September, public broadcaster ČT reported Monday.

The proposal is part of the draft law on the registration of public contracts, and comes in the wake of allegations against a high-profile opposition politician, former Social Democrat (SSD) regional governor David Rath, of contract-rigging and padding in central Bohemia.

“The financial volume of contracts covered will reach about Kč 180 billion, which we want to ensure is spent transparently,” MP Jan Farský (TOP 09) told a news conference. Neighboring Slovakia, which implemented such a system, has seen cost-savings of about 10 percent, he said, so the Czech state could save tens of billions of crowns.

Karolína Peake, the former Public Affairs (VV) deputy prime minister tasked with the government’s anti-corruption drive, now looking to form a new party, LIDEM (short for Liberal Democrats and meaning “with the people” in Czech), took a lead role in drafting the law.

Farský said he and others on lawmakers who had worked on it were now just waiting for the Ministry of Justice to comment on the bill before submitting it to the Civic Democrat (ODS)-led center-right government. He said the ODS and opposition had already commented on the bill; it is therefore expected to pass without any trouble. 

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