Our Risk Management, Corporate Crime Investigations & Defence team helped Tallinn city government to formulate its new anti-corruption strategy.

To outline the strategy, research was carried out from June 2018 to March 2019. This mainly covered three areas: review of the city’s internal policies and their legality; supervision of property transactions; and random inspection of payment of subsidies. As a result of the research, 37 proposals were made to cut corruption risks.

As a radical change, under the new anti-corruption strategy the supervisory boards of the city’s companies and foundations would be de-politicized. This in turn would mean that the selection committee which currently appoints high city officials would also become apolitical.

In Estonia, prevention of corruption is predominantly regulated by the Anti-Corruption Act, which also lays down certain obligations for local governments.

Difficulty of the project

The Tallinn city system is large by Estonian standards, covering some 20 000 employees. The city controls a budget of nearly EUR 800 million, with several government agencies caught at the crossroads of disparate interests. The city also owns a significant amount of property and is involved in a large number of public procurements.

This all presented us with a rather challenging task requiring a substantial amount of work. The research and analysis team assisting Tallinn city included Counsel Norman Aas ‒ the country’s long-term former Prosecutor General and Secretary General of the Ministry of Justice ‒ Merika Nimmo, a Senior Associate with a prosecutorial background, and Partner Carri Ginter, who has first-hand experience in advising on anti-corruption activities from his time as an interim management board member of the Port of Tallinn.