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.


What do studies say about corruption in the Kurdistan Region of Iraq over the past ten years? What are the drivers of corruption, the key areas of corruption, and both the economic and political impact of corruption?


We would like to provide all country offices with a current corruption country profile to inform situation analysis.



2.Extent of corruption

3.Nature of corruption challenges

4.Key sectors

5.Anti-corruption framework



Many thanks for the expert advice given to this Helpdesk query by Nisar Talabany, Senior Advisor to the Prime Minister, Kurdistan Regional Government, and Emmanuel Cuvillier, Senior Public Sector and Governance Specialist, & colleagues, World Bank.


Kurdistan Region of Iraq has faced years of war and genocide, but has developed a political system with regular elections, and an improving space for civil society and its engagement in governance.

Levels of corruption in the country, while lower than in Iraq, are comparatively high compared to other countries in the region. Corruption challenges are rooted in the strong role that the two established political parties have in the political system, nepotism, a weak bureaucratic governance system and the task to ensure proper use of oil revenues.

While progress has been made on delivering the government’s 2009 ‘Good Governance and Transparency Strategy’ and the ‘Vision for 2020’, there is a desire to see more high-profile convictions for corruption cases. A challenging media environment remains a serious constraint on effective anti-corruption reform.


Coralie Pring, Transparency International, [email protected]


Marie Chêne, Transparency InternationalDieter Zinnbauer, Ph.D, Transparency International




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