Public Affairs: European Union to tighten up on lobbyists and NGOs

European lobbyists and NGOs face tighter regulation under an initiative proposed by European Union anti-fraud commissioner Siim Kallas.

Speaking at Nottingham Business School last week, the European Commission vice-president and commissioner for administrative affairs, audit and anti-fraud said: 'There is no mandatory regulation on reporting or registering lobbying activities. Registers provided by lobbyists in the EU are voluntary and do not provide much information on specific issues represented or financing.'

The European Transparency Initiative will launch this spring with the publication of a white paper, followed by a conference at which stakeholders will be invited to develop proposals. A directive could be issued by the autumn.

Around 15,000 lobbyists and some 2,600 special interest groups operate in Brussels, said Kallas.

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