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Public hearings in the process of drafting the law 2011-2013

Within this project, Transparency Serbia monitors the organization of public debates on legal proposals in the Republic of Serbia. Public hearings are one of the means to ensure the transparency of the work of state bodies and aim to increase the democratic participation of citizens and their representatives in the process of formulating laws and bylaws passed by the authorities. The practice of organizing public hearings is also of great importance in the fight against corruption because it allows those familiar with a particular matter to point out problematic provisions or provisions that favor the interests of individuals or groups to the detriment of the public interest.

The legal framework and practice of organizing public hearings in Serbia are underdeveloped.

Citizens have a constitutionally guaranteed right to influence policy-making. When it comes to the legislative process, citizens have the right to participate, by submitting petitions and initiatives. In addition, the Law on State Administration prescribes the obligation to organize public hearings when a new regulation is adopted, and a similar provision is contained in the relevant acts that regulate the work of local self-government bodies. The e-government portal enables the bodies of the republic and local authorities to publish information on the public hearings they organize. The National Anti-Corruption Strategy, which has been in force since 2005. provides for greater transparency in the drafting process.

However, all these possibilities are not used enough. The legal provisions on public hearings are vague. There is no pre-defined form of public debate or sanction in the event that a public body fails to do so. The fulfillment of this legal obligation is not monitored in an appropriate manner, while the interest of citizens is weak. The opportunities provided by the e-Government Portal are not used to a sufficient extent, again due to vaguely defined obligations for use and insufficient information of citizens.

During this project, Transparency Serbia will focus on the analysis of the legal framework and practice, identifying the extent to which public hearings are organized, but also on making recommendations for improvement and advocating for better information of citizens.



The project is supported by the Embassy of the Kingdom of the Netherlands in Belgrade.



In the implementation of this project, TS cooperates with the Project for Legal Reform in Serbia of GIZ. As a result of this cooperation, the analysis of the legal framework and practice of public hearings in Serbia, the analysis of regulations on public hearings in other countries and the recommendations for amending regulations in Serbia worked on by our organization are included in the Study on Improving the Legislative Process in Serbia. to be presented on September 25, 2012 in the National Assembly of the Republic of Serbia.



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