Comments on: Latvia: The governor’s corruption undermines the ECB EU news and policy debates across languages Tue, 20 Nov 2018 04:43:25 +0000 hourly 1 By: Vidvuds Beldavs Wed, 05 Sep 2018 11:10:54 +0000 Why the president of the Bank of Latvia would want to own a Audi A8L is unclear, but ownership does not prove crime. His salary could make payments without resorting to bribes.
Details about the charges have appeared in the Latvia media. If true, he would face prison. However, Rimsevics claims his innocence. Oligarchs, crime bosses, even terrorist groups command vast sums that they need to launder. They are prepared to exert considerable pressure to achieve their objectives. The line of defense is the banking system with the president of the central bank having a key role in the process. That position needs to be well paid based on the pressures and personal risks facing the official. Rimsevics may be innocent. In the next few months we will learn whether he succeeds in clearing his name. He needs to be considered innocent until proven guilty.
Cyprus, Czech, Malta, Slovakia, Croatia, Hungary, Romania, Italy,Greece, Bulgaria and about 100 other countries lag Latvia 44th in the corruption index. The claim of 86% stating that the country is corrupt would be matched by many countries with better transparency index scores. The public shows discontent. Travel is free and many wonder why they are not as well-off as the Germans and Norwegians after 27 years of independence and blame the government. However, there is broad support for a vigorous anti-corruption effort that continues to do its work.