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POGAR > Countries > Country Theme: Anti-Corruption: Algeria
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UN Conventions and Other Agreements

United Nations Convention against Corruption: signed 9 December 2003, ratified with reservations on 25 August 2004.

United Nations Convention against Transnational Organized Crime: signed 12 December 2000, ratified with reservations on 7 October 2002.

Algeria is a founding member of the Middle East and North Africa Financial Action Task Force, established on 30 November 2004.

The Association Algérienne de Lutte contre la corruption is Algeria’s National Contact for Transparency International.

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Government Institutions and Initiatives

Algeria’s president created a committee to study corruption following his election in 1999, and in 2005, after his election to a second five-year term, his government submitted an Anti-Corruption law for passage by both the People’s National Assembly and the Senate in June 2005. The Law No. 06-01of 20 February 2006 reinforces existing legislation to comply with the UN Convention against Corruption, but does not recognize civil society initiatives or protect those who denounce corrupt practices. Nor does it grant autonomy to a government agency announced by decree in November 2006 that awaits implementation. In early 2005 dozens of customs officials and at least thirty-three judges were dismissed in official campaigns against corruption. The “clean hands” campaign also put powerful governors in jail and forbade chief executive officers from leaving the country. There was a crackdown on customs authorities in February 2006: one hundred agents were fired, and 530 were being sued for alleged involvement in several corruption affairs.

Already sentenced in absentia in March 2004 to five years of prison and a fine of $85 million for banking violations, Abdelmoumen Khalifa is again to face trial in July 2006 for the “scandal of the century” involving his defunct Khalifa Bank. At least five former ministers and forty heads of state enterprises are witnesses who may also face prosecution.

The presidential ordinance of February 28, 2008, broadens the authority of the Inspection Générale des Finances, the government auditing office, to discipline public sector enterprises.

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Civil Society Initiatives

Transparency International’s affiliate in Algeria, the Algerian Association against Corruption, is very active and outspoken in its efforts to fight corruption in Algeria. Officers of the National Audit Court (Cour des Comptes) publicly protested at a press conference in August 2005 against being marginalized in their efforts to audit government finances.

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Public Procurement

Government procurement is supposed to be governed by the Law on Public Tenders rather than "private agreement", prohibited in a speech given by the president in April 2005. Government contracts for large projects are now awarded after a three step process: 1) a short list is created based only on the technical merits of the proposals submitted by the bidders; 2) the Algerian client redefines the project's specifications based upon the proposals received; and 3) the bidder with the lowest price for the redefined specifications gets the contract. State-owned companies are not required to purchase goods and services through tenders, but many of them do.

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Anti Money Laundering

Law No. 05-01, Algeria’s first anti-money laundering legislation, was issued on February 6, 2005, and published in the Journal Officiel of February 9. It being implemented with technical assistance from the Bank of France and the World Bank, leading to the decree of the Ministry of Finance of 18 May 2008 detailing procedures for tracking suspicious movements of funds. In December 2004 a unit appointed by presidential decree began operations in the Ministry of Finance to detect any suspicious banking or financial operations.

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Corruption Perception Index

Algeria scored 2.8 on Transparency International's Corruption Perception Index 2009. The scale runs from 0 (high corruption) to 10 (no corruption). It is ranking in the 111th position among 180; the same as Egypt and Djibouti, ahead of Syria but behind Morocco. Algeria had scored 3.2 in 2008 and was in 92nd place, ahead of Lebanon but behind Morocco, among 180 countries. In 2007 Algeria scored 3.0 and was in 99th place, tied with Lebanon and ahead of Egypt as well as Mauritania, among 180 countries. In 2006 Algeria scored 3.1 and was in 84th place, tied with Mauritania, among 163 countries.

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