Friday, 11 January 2013

Putin's fight against corruption is a joke

Sergey Aleksashenko, director of macroeconomic studies at Moscow’s Higher School of Economics and a former deputy finance minister, does not agree with "experts" who declare that Vladimir Putin has now begun a serious fight against corruption in Russia:
I don’t agree. I prefer to wait and see those affair end up. Two years ago in the Moscow region an extensive network of illegal casinos was discovered which functioned with the support of the prosecutor’s office and police. During the investigation many people were arrested but all have since been released, and the prosecutor’s office declared that the evidence collected was not valid. The latest spate of financial scandals could come to the same conclusions.
Global experience suggests that independent and fair courts, and an honest and corruption-free state are indispensable conditions for a competitive, open economy and for sustained economic growth.
Putin seems to want to disprove this position. He would like a more efficient, fast-growing economy. But he does not believe in private incentives but in bureaucratic decisions. Moreover he knows perfectly well that the emergence of independent courts in Russia immediately conducts to the collapse of the political system created by him.
And he is not prepared to pay that price. Faced with the choice of keeping power or promoting institutional reform he has chosen power. I do not see why he would change his position in 2013. Can a leopard change his spots?

Read the entire article here

Aleksashenko is of course right. A real fight against corruption in Russia is possible only after  Putin, who recently was awarded an honourable mention as the most corrupt person in the world by the Organised Crime and Corruption Reporting Project, has been replaced as president by an honest man.  

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