U4 Anti-Corruption Resource Centre

This Anti-Corruption Helpdesk brief was produced in response to a query from a U4 Partner Agency. The U4 Helpdesk is operated by Transparency International in collaboration with the U4 Anti-Corruption Resource Centre based at the Chr. Michelsen Institute.


Can you please provide an overview of corruption and anti-corruption efforts in Iraq?


We would like to provide all country offices with an anticorruption country profile to inform their contribution portfolio analysis


1. Overview of corruption in Iraq
2. Anti-corruption efforts in Iraq
3. References


This answer does not extensively deal with the specificities of the Kurdistan Regional Government (KRG) and primarily focuses on corruption and anti-corruption in the rest of Iraq. 


After a difficult beginning marked by institutional instability, Iraq’s new regime has in recent years become increasingly aware of the enormous corruption challenges it faces. Massive embezzlement, procurement scams, money laundering, oil smuggling and widespread bureaucratic bribery have led the country to the bottom of international corruption rankings, fuelled political violence and hampered effective state building and service delivery. Although the country’s anti-corruption initiatives and framework have expanded since 2005, they still fail to provide a strong and comprehensive integrity system. Political interference in anti-corruption bodies and politicisation of corruption issues, weak civil society, insecurity, lack of resources and incomplete legal provisions severely limit the government’s capacity to efficiently curb soaring corruption. Ensuring the integrity of the management of Iraq’s massive and growing oil revenue will therefore be one of the country’s greatest challenges in the coming years.


Maxime Agator, Transparency International, [email protected]


Marie Chêne, Transparency International, [email protected] Finn Heinrich, Ph.D, [email protected]




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