World Economic Forum’s Competitiveness Report Shows EU and NATO Member Croatia Worse than Russia, Serbia and Ukraine
Croatia’s Parlous State of the Judiciary at 126th — Worst within the European Union | Russia is 91st, Nigeria 99th, Serbia 101st, Ukraine 105th and Zimbabwe 113th on Judicial Independence out of 141 countries ranked
February 17, 2020 | Washington, DC — In the 2019 Global Competitiveness Report presented by the World Economic Forum (WEF), Croatia’s judicial independence was ranked 126th out of 141 countries, rated the worst within the European Union (EU), and falling further behind non-EU member states including Russia, Ukraine and Serbia. In the previous year’s 2018 report, Croatia’s judicial independence ranked 120 out of 140 nations reviewed.
The report’s findings expose a flawed EU enlargement project which continues to ignore the most significant bedrock of democratic governance — the foundational rule of law which protects human rights, private property and safeguards democratic institutions. Independent judiciary is necessary for the rule of law to prevail, otherwise, the legal rights of citizens and private economic stakeholders are abused. The severe violation of the rule of law principle with a deficient court system in Croatia perpetuates injustice and rampant corruption, destroying the lives of Balkan nation’s citizens and driving out legitimate foreign investors.
A further abuse of the rule of law principle was noted on January 1, 2020, when Croatia took over presidency of the European Union, namely the Council of the European Union, for the first half of the year. The flawed EU enlargement initiative allowed lawless Croatia to preside over the EU. While Western leaders, including EU institutions, rightfully deride non-EU Eastern Europe’s reform laggards and their governance as deeply flawed and corrupt, these nations score better than the EU-presiding Croatia. The WEF report ranks the Russian Federation’s judicial independence the 91st place, Ukraine 99th, and Serbia at 101st, outranking EU and NATO member Croatia at 126th out of 141 nations.