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Bad marks for Greek justice

Greece failed to make positive marks in the second European Justice scoreboard of the European Commission which was presented on Monday.

The objective of the EU Justice Scoreboard is to assist the EU and its  Member States to achieve more effective justice by providing objective, reliable and comparable data on the functioning of the justice systems of all Member States.

Such data is essential to support reforms in national justice systems required for relaunching economic growth.

There is a need for such a systematic overview of the functioning of justice systems in all Member States that takes full account of different legal systems and traditions.

Whatever the model of the national justice system or the legal tradition in which it is anchored, quality, independence and efficiency are some of the essential parameters of an 'effective justice system'.

In particular, for Greece, the scoreboard shows that the time taken to hear civil and commercial disputes of the lowest order has increased from 190 days in 2010 to 460 days in 2012, the third-slowest figure of the 22 EU member states for whom data is available.

Meanwhile, Greece also has the least efficient justice system of the 20 EU member states, according to the available data.

On a scale ranging from 0 to 4, the Greek justice system ranks worst in the EU with a rating of 1.5 and is followed by Cyprus with a rate of 2, while 10 member states (Denmark, Estonia, France, Luxembourg, Malta, Austria, Portugal, Slovenia, Finland and Sweden) scored the top mark of 4.

The scoreboard also presents rates the independence of the justice system, by which reckoning Greece stands in 24th position of the 28 EU members and 84th among 184 countries.