EU Resource Centre

This Anti-Corruption Helpdesk brief was produced in response to a query from the European Commission. The Anti-Corruption Helpdesk is operated by Transparency International and funded by the European Union


Please provide an overview of corruption and anti-corruption in Guinea-Bissau, focusing in particular on the judiciary and public financial management.


1. Overview of corruption in Guinea-Bissau
2. Overview of anti-corruption efforts
3. References


Guinea-Bissau has had a long history of political instability and misrule. No president has ever finished his term in office. Most recently, in 2012, a military coup deposed the government and the country was in a transitional state until elections took place in April and May 2014, and a head of state, President Jose Marino Vaz, was elected.

Corruption and lack of accountability are major problems in Guinea-Bissau, which is often referred to as a major African hub for drug trafficking. Related organised crime networks allegedly reach into the highest echelons of the political and military elite in the context of a lucrative drug trade that has taken root in Guinea-Bissau over the last 15 years. 

The necessary legal and institutional anti-corruption framework is still largely missing in Guinea-Bissau. Despite good governance efforts in the past, the 2012 coup brought reforms to a standstill. As such, most of the information available relates to pre-2012 initiatives. These include improvements to the country’s public financial management systems as well as some attempts to improve anti-money laundering legislation. However, weak governance continues to plague the country.


Samira Lindner, Transparency International, [email protected]


Marie Chêne, Dieter Zinnbauer, PhD., Transparency International




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