Rolling Back State Capture in Southeast Europe: Implementing Effective Instruments for Asset Declaration and Politically Exposed Companies

Mineva, D., Fazekas, M., Poltoratskaia, V. and Tsabala, K. (2023). Rolling Back State Capture in Southeast Europe. Implementing Effective Instruments for Asset Declaration and Politically Exposed Companies. Center for the Study of Democracy.

Russia’s ongoing war of aggression against Ukraine has intensified existing geopolitical tensions throughout 2022 and into 2023, exposing persistent rule of law deficiencies and other governance gaps in Southeast Europe (SEE-9: Bulgaria, Croatia, Hungary, Romania, Albania, Bosnia and Herzegovina, North Macedonia, Montenegro, and Serbia). This in turn has spurred efforts to renew the stalled EU integration and consolidation process, which serves as the main driver of good governance reforms in the region. The current report builds upon international and EU measures to strengthen the rule of law, and highlights the critical areas of impact that could be achieved through public-private partnerships. This second SEE Good Governance Report focuses on the big data tools necessary to identify the existence of ill-gained assets hidden by politically exposed persons (PEPs). These tools could help counter state and media capture practices in the region, preventing authoritarian tendencies, including foreign malign influence, from threatening the Euro-Atlantic democratization of Southeast Europe.

Read the full report here


The first SEE Good Governance was released in 2022 and aimed to uncover how illicit wealth is generated. The first report is available here


The R2G4P project, coordinated by the Center for the Study of Democracy, Bulgaria, benefits from a € 1.5 million grant from Iceland, Liechtenstein and Norway through the EEA and Norway Grants Fund for Regional Cooperation.

Please find more information about our projects here