A Workshop on the conflict of interest rules and regulations in the judiciary was organized by the Council of Europe in Tbilisi on 28 March 2018. The objective of the meeting was to present findings of the comparative legislative analysis and to discuss additional safeguards to further strengthen regulatory framework against the conflict of interest incidents.
Head of the Council of Europe Office in Georgia Cristian Urse opened the meeting and highlighted the sources that inspired the initiative: The Group of States against Corruption (“GRECO”) recent evaluation report and the Action Plan for the Judiciary in Georgia 2017-2019. Secretary of the High Council of Justice of Georgia Giorgi Miqautadze overviewed recent amendments to the legislation on conflict of interest, also noting further areas that still require precision to achieve higher level of independence and transparency within the judiciary: “Although there are considerable improvements in the law, the criteria of conflict of interests certainly need to be clarified”, the Secretary concluded.
The Workshop proceeded with the active participation of the High Council of Justice members, staff, and representatives of the Supreme Court. Driven by the conclusions of the Fourth Evaluation Round of GRECO and Opinions No 1 and 17 of the Consultative Council of European Judges (CCJE), the Workshop created a platform where challenges and best practices were debated. Participants agreed that discussions on this topic should continue with the legislators, as a part of the pending “4th wave” judicial reform.
The activity took place within the framework of the Council of Europe project “Support to the Judicial Reform in Georgia” funded by the voluntary contributions of Bulgaria, Liechtenstein, Lithuania, Norway, the Slovak Republic and Sweden to support the implementation of the Council of Europe Action Plan for Georgia 2016-2019.