Ukraine is facing a considerable challenge from corruption, which our research showed is presentin nearly all levels of government and politics, the judiciary, and business. It is the view of the Task Force that corruption has become so severe that it has the potential to threaten Ukraine’s political and economic stability as well as the country’s European Union membership aspirations.
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While Ukraine has made progress since the Orange Revolution in areas such as developing an independent media and a more active civil society, its political leaders have failed to fulfi ll the core promise of the Revolution by effectively addressing corruption. Instead, our research revealed that public suspicions about corruption at the highest reaches of political power are widespread in Ukraine. The country’s major political candidates made anti-corruption policy one of the leading issues during the September 2007 parliamentary election campaign. This election thus provides an opportunity for a new government to launch an ambitious set of anti-corruption reforms. Yet, Ukrainian political leaders, even those that claim anti-corruption policy as a priority, have in the past failed to muster the political will to tackle this challenge. Indeed, allegations of corruption against some of these same political leaders and their parties reduce their willingness and credibility to act.