The European Commission’s register of lobbyists is due to be reviewed in spring 2009, and will then be transformed into a joint Commission/Parliament register. Criticisms of the Commission’s current register include the fact that it is voluntary, lacks names of lobbyists and also fails to provide precise or reliable figures on how much is spent on EU lobbying.
ALTER-EU claims that the voluntary approach is failing, with the compliance rate at less than 20%, and that the overall quality of information disclosed is poor. To restore the credibility of its transparency agenda, it says the European Commission must:
- introduce a mandatory registration system.
- develop more detailed requirements and guidance for financial disclosure.
- make data entries comparable.
- Include an obligation to report the names of lobbyists.
More information can be found on ALTER-EU’s pdf document ‘Commission Lobby Register Fails Transparency Test.’