Portugal singled out as NATO member with elevated risk of corruption

In a list of 77 indicators used to evaluate corruption vulnerability in a country’s defence sectors, Portugal has revealed it has “elevated risks of integrity” on a par with Armenia and the Ukraine, reports Transparency International.

The study also shows Portugal to be one of NATO’s worst performers in terms of “operational abilities”.

It gives countries a ranking, explains Público, from A (low risk) to F (critical risk).

According to the ranking, Portugal scores a D.

“Portugal is a long way from the best international patterns of transparency, supervision and responsibility in areas that touch on the sector of defence,” said TI’s report, stressing that the country’s ranking illustrates that risks of corruption “persist, particularly on the level of contracting services and equipment, in contra-deals and over the management of heritage assets”.

Project investigator Luís Bernardo said the new findings should alert both politicians and military chiefs to the “urgent necessity” for a debate to “reinforce integrity in this sector”.

The damning report has added fuel to the fire of Euro MP Ana Gomes – still intent on uncovering corruption in the country’s controversial submarine deals with Germany. She told us today, she would be back putting pressure on the new government over the study that has been sent to Portugal for comments, which have this far remained unforthcoming, reports Público.

Bernardo has told journalists the Ministry of Defence “cannot keep up a culture of opacity and secretism”.

TI’s report also alluded to a “lack of supervision in the export of armaments” and “toxic” public confidence “with regard to strategic partners and the image of Portugal”.

natasha.donn@algarveresident.com