National regulations and mandates
Several countries have adopted regulations that mandate the use of Integrity Pacts in certain public procurement projects, often over a particular value.
Italy – municipal contracting
In Italy, Milan was the first municipality to agree to implement Integrity Pacts to oversee public procurement. Turin, Bergamo, Monza and others followed. The use of IPs by these Italian cities has fluctuated depending on the political will of successive municipal governments.
Italy country overview
Since 2007, India’s Central Vigilance Commission has recommended the use of Integrity Pacts to oversee public procurement. Since 2009, it has issued Standard Operating Procedures mandating the use of IPs in procurement above certain value thresholds or in certain industries.
India country overview
Pakistan’s Public Procurement Rules enacted in 2004 mandate the use of IPs to oversee all public procurement tenders valued at or above PKR 10 million (around USD 62,500).
Pakistan country overview
Since 2004, Mexican procurement rules mandate the use of a “social witness” (testigo social) to oversee public procurement in certain public tenders. In 2009, social witnesses were mandated for all public procurement above a certain threshold. The threshold amount was raised in 2015.
Mexico country overview
Making Integrity Pacts mandatory
Many practitioners argue that making Integrity Pacts mandatory by law can endanger their effectiveness, turning them into a window-dressing exercise. The main advantages and risks of making Integrity Pacts mandatory by law are summarised below. For more discussion, see the Learning Review by the Basel Institute and Blomeyer & Sanz.
- More Integrity Pacts will be undertaken, making their use more sustainable.
- More stakeholders are exposed to Integrity Pacts, lessening the learning curve.
- More case examples are generated, helping to generate evidence and refine the approach.
- Economies of scale: reduced cost per application.
- Becomes a meaningless check-box exercise.
- Used as window dressing.
- Perception that it is just another formality.
- Low trust in the monitor.
National policy support
Several countries have endorsed the use of Integrity Pacts through recommendations adopted in their National Anti-Corruption Strategies. These countries include:
International policy endorsements
Integrity Pacts have been endorsed as an effective anti-corruption tool for public procurement through international policy institutions such as the B20.
In 2019, the project Integrity Pacts – Civil Control Mechanism for Safeguarding EU Funds coordinated by Transparency International won the European Ombudsman’s Award for Good Administration 2019 in the category “excellence in open administration.”
The G20’s Compendium of Good Practices for Promoting Integrity and Transparency in Infrastructure Development (2019) also recommends the use of Integrity Pacts as an effective tool to promote integrity and transparency in public procurement.