Since 1993, the European Union has deployed over 120 election observation missions (EOMs) worldwide. In April 2000, the EU adopted a distinct methodology for election observation based on a long term presence in the country, a comprehensive assessment of all aspects of the electoral process, and an increased presence of observers on election day to follow the process in polling stations. Over the years observer groups have registered a general trend of improvement in the conduct of election processes, yet unfair campaigning conditions, and abuse of administrative resources, unequal access to funding, lack of transparency and accountability in the use of funding continue to affect election processes in many countries worldwide.
In view of the above, and in consultation with the EEAS Election observation and Democracy Division, the European Commission decided to launch a study aimed at developing the EU methodology for the assessment of political and campaign finance by EOMs.
The objective was to enhance the EU election observation missions (EOMs) capacity to assess political and campaign finances within the context of the election processes observed.
Specifically, the assignment allowed EU EOM members to better understand and articulate the concepts and principles relevant to political and campaign finance, become familiar with the relevant international legal framework, and organize a division of tasks within the EOM for the assessment of political and campaign finance, in particular with regards to transparency, accountability and level playing field.
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