The independence of the judiciary as a precondition to trust in the justice system
Independence, quality and efficiency are essential parameters of an effective justice system. Well-functioning and fully independent justice systems are key to ensuring that justice works for the benefit of citizens and businesses. Effective judicial systems are essential for mutual trust and for improving the investment climate and ensuring the sustainability of long-term economic growth, something we constantly forget. It is therefore precisely because of their impact on the economy and investments, that efficiency, quality and independence of justice systems is one of the priorities of the European Semester – the annual cycle of coordination of EU economic policy.
The recommendations made by the European Commission (EC) in its latest report on Rule of Law in order to improve the situation in some EU member states, and the data on perceptions from the EU Justice Scoreboard for 2022, should be a good roadmap for us as well, bearing in mind that an effective, quality and independent justice system is a prerequisite to the implementation of EU law, ensuring the rule of law and respect for the fundamental values on which the European Union is founded.
In this document, the focus is on the independence of judicial systems as a European standard and the perceptions of independence. Initially it gives an overview of the data from the EU Justice Scoreboard for 2022, regarding the perceptions of the judicial independence in the EU member states, than it gives a picture of the perceptions of judicial independence from the Balkan Barometer for 2022 for the Western Balkan countries, and in the end it gives a conclusion as to what our country should do to maintain and promote judicial independence.