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The European Commission's first report on corruption in the European Union should be seen within this framework.When EU Commissioner for Home Affairs Cecilia Malmstrom was persuaded that there was a need for the EU to take a stronger line against corruption, she approved a biennial review of how well or badly the EU and its institutions were performing against corruption.While the cost of corruption will never be known precisely, the report estimates it cost the EU economy the equivalent of $190 billion per year.There are reports on corruption and countermeasures in all individual states in the EU – though (rather unfortunate for the commission's credibility), not on corruption in EU institutions, as was originally envisaged. As for EU businesses, they stated that corruption was the biggest problem in construction and the IT-telecoms field.This first report shows that the European Commission appreciates that corruption is a serious issue affecting its own legitimacy and credibility.Michael Levi was part of an appointed expert group that reviewed the report on EU corruption by the EU's commissioner on home affairs.
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