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Luxembourg

Transparent and Open Administration (LU0001)

Overview

At-a-Glance

Action Plan: Luxembourg Action Plan 2019-2021

Action Plan Cycle: 2019

Status: Active

Institutions

Lead Institution: Ministère d’Etat

Support Institution(s): Service information et presse Tous les organismes tombant dans le champ d’application de la nouvelle loi

Policy Areas

Access to Information, E-Government, Legislation & Regulation, Regulatory Governance, Right to Information

IRM Review

IRM Report: Luxembourg Design Report 2019-2021

Starred: Pending IRM Review

Early Results: Pending IRM Review

Design i

Verifiable: Yes

Relevant to OGP Values: Access to Information

Potential Impact:

Implementation i

Completion: Pending IRM Review

Description

Quel est le problème public en réponse auquel l’engagement est pris ?
Manque de transparence, volonté d’un accès plus facile et plus rapide aux documents relatifs à l’exercice d’une activité administrative

Quel est l’engagement ?
-Projet de loi n°6810 relative à une administration transparente et ouverte : Instauration d’un droit d’accès aux documents détenus par les administrations et services de l’État, les communes, les syndicats de communes, les établissements publics placés sous la tutelle de l’État ou sous la surveillance des communes, ainsi que les personnes morales fournissant des services publics, dans la mesure où les documents sont relatifs à l’exercice d’une activité administrative. Il en va de même des documents détenus par la Chambre des Députés, le Conseil d’État, le Médiateur, la Cour des comptes et les Chambres professionnelles, qui sont relatifs à l’exercice d’une activité administrative;
-Principe d’une publication d’office des documents librement accessibles ;
-Mise en place d’un droit de demander la communication d’un document accessible.

Comment est-ce que l’engagement contribuera à résoudre le problème public ?
Le principe du partage en ligne des documents administratifs permettra à toute personne physique et morale, sans aucune formalité, d’avoir un accès rapide et direct aux informations. Le processus décisionnel devient ainsi plus transparent, ce qui devrait favoriser la confiance des citoyens dans les décideurs publics puisqu’ils seront ainsi en mesure de suivre, de mieux comprendre et de contrôler l’activité de l’État.

Pourquoi est-ce que cet engagement est pertinent en matière des valeurs du PGO ?
L’engagement s’inscrit dans une politique de transparence et met l’accent sur une volonté d’ouverture aux citoyens. En rendant publics davantage de documents, l’accessibilité à l’information sera améliorée concrètement.

Informations supplémentaires
-La loi s’ajoute aux législations actuellement existantes, à savoir :
-la loi du 1er décembre 1978 réglant la procédure administrative non contentieuse et le règlement grand-ducal du 8 juin 1979 relatif à la procédure à suivre par les administrations relevant de l’État et des communes ;
-la loi modifiée du 25 novembre 2005 concernant l’accès du public à l’information en matière d’environnement ; et
-la loi modifiée du 7 décembre 2007 sur la réutilisation des informations du secteur public.

IRM Midterm Status Summary

1. Transparent and open administration

Main Objective

  • “Draft Law No 6810 on transparent and open administration: Establishment of a right of access to documents held by the authorities and services of the State, municipalities, unions of municipalities, public establishments under the supervision of the State, or under the supervision of municipalities, and legal persons providing public services, in so far as the documents relate to an administrative activity. The same applies to documents held by the Chamber of Deputies, the Council of State, the Ombudsman, the Court of Auditors and the professional chambers, which relate to the exercise of an administrative activity;
  • Principle of ex officio publication of documents that are freely accessible;
  • Establishment of a right to request communication of an accessible document.”

Milestones

  • “Entry into force of the new law and implementation (January 1, 2019 – continuous)
  • Initial/continuing training of civil servants for the application of the new law (August 2019 - August 2021, continuously)”

Editorial Note: For the complete text of this commitment, please see Luxembourg’s action plan at https://www.opengovpartnership.org/wp-content/uploads/2019/08/Luxembourg_Action-Plan_2019-2021_EN.pdf.

IRM Design Report Assessment

Verifiable:

Yes

Relevant:

Access to Information

Potential impact:

Minor

Commitment Analysis

This commitment pursues the promulgation of Law 6810 on transparent and open administration. [1] Until 2018, Luxembourg did not have a standalone access to information law. Additionally, prior to the entry into force of Law 6810 in January 2019, there was no legislation or regulation granting natural and legal persons the right to access administrative documents. Therefore, during the first phase of the co-creation process, the former point of contact and the Ministry of State proposed a draft of this commitment for review by stakeholders, reasoning that having an access to information law is key to advance open government in Luxembourg. [2]

The law grants natural and legal persons the right to access documents held by a variety of public administrations and officials. [3] Furthermore, the law created a Commission for Access to Documents that ensures the right to access documents and advises public authorities regarding the correct application of the law. Requesters who are denied access to a document can request, free of charge, an opinion from the Commission, which must deliver an opinion within two months. [4] According to a representative of the Ministry of State, civil society organisations (CSOs) were not consulted during the drafting process but several professional chambers were consulted. [5]

As mentioned in Section III of this report, there was a hiatus between the first and second phases of the co-creation process. This commitment was drafted during the first phase. The access to information law was passed during the hiatus in September 2018 and entered into force on 1 January 2019. [6] Original milestones of this commitment included passing the law, but these were revised after the law passed. The new milestones focus on implementing the law and continuous training for civil servants on the correct application of the law.

This commitment is relevant to the OGP value of access to information, as it enforces the principle of ex officio in the publication of government documents and improves citizens’ rights to free access to information. While the commitment is verifiable, it is not clear how many civil servants will be trained, what type of training they will receive, or how this internal fostering of public administration capacities will impact citizens’ right to access public information.

If implemented, this commitment could positively impact implementation of Luxembourg’s new access to information law. However, as mentioned above, the law itself was promulgated before the start of the action plan. The milestones primarily focus on the continuation of ongoing activities and which are the sole responsibility of the Ministry of State. Furthermore, the commitment does not specify the type of training or how the internal capacity-building will impact citizens’ access public information. Therefore, it is difficult to assess the potential impact of this commitment higher than minor.

As next steps, the IRM researcher recommends the following:

  • Broaden participation of CSOs and other stakeholders in monitoring the implementation of the access to information law and integrate their input into the implementation evaluation that the Ministry of State will conduct. This can expand the scope of the commitment by including recommendations and feedback from ultimate beneficiaries.
  • Strengthen the proactive publication of frequent requests on the official Luxembourg´s website.
  • Ensure that the processing of requests for information remains in place during the COVID-19 pandemic, to the greatest extent possible, and prioritize information requests related to COVID-19. In light of the possible increased demand for information related to COVID-19, ensure that adequate resources are allocated to reactive and proactive transparency, and that there are sufficient trained public officials to meet that demand.
  • Prioritise a shift to digitalisation of all information, documents, and data so that access can be assured in a timely manner, ensuring secure records and archives storage, protection, and retrieval.
  • Ensure that the training of civil servants includes best practices for record keeping, such as easily accessible digital archives to facilitate rapid location and compilation of information in the future.
[1] State of Luxembourg, "Projet de loi relative à une administration transparente et ouverte." [Draft law on transparent and open administration.] (Official Journal of the Grand Duchy from Luxembourg, 10 Jan. 2018), http://legilux.public.lu/eli/etat/projet/pl/10053.
[2] Luc Dockendorf, virtual interview by IRM researcher, 15 May 2020.
[3] The law allows citizens to request information from the following: public administration, public services, municipalities, syndicate of municipalities, public establishments under the supervision of the government or municipalities, legal persons providing public services, Parliament, the Council of State, the Mediator, the Court of Auditors, and professional chambers which are related to the exercise of administrative activities.
[4] Delphine Stoffel (Attaché, Ministry of State), virtual exchange with IRM researcher, 9 Jun. 2020.
[5] Id.
[6] State of Luxembourg, [Draft law on transparent and open administration].

Open Government Partnership