IACA participates in the Workshop on Clean Covid-19 Response and Reopening

On 8 December, the Dean of the International Anti-Corruption Academy, Mr. Thomas Stelzer, participated in the Workshop on Clean Covid-19 Response and Economic Reopening by Belt and Road Cooperation Partners. The event was organized by the National Supervision Commission of the People’s Republic of China just a day before the International Anti-Corruption Day. The purpose of the event was to promote understanding on, and exchange views, experiences and enhance practical cooperation in fighting corruption amid the Covid-19 response and economic reopening, particularly in the context of the upcoming Special Session of the UN General Assembly against corruption (UNGASS 2021).

Keynote speeches were delivered by Mr. Yang Xiaodu, Chairman of the National Supervision Commission, and Ms. Ghada Waly, Executive Director of the United Nations Office on Drugs and Crime. Moreover, the meeting was addressed by high level anti-corruption officials of Belt and Road Partner countries, as well as representatives of international organizations, particularly the Asian-African Legal Consultative Organization, the OECD, and IACA.

In his speech, Dean Stelzer remarked that in order to defend against a drain of resources which have been poured into the Covid-19 response, the international community must provide the practitioners and front-line workers with the tools they need to fight corruption.

“People in areas vulnerable to exploitation need to have at least basic training to be able to identify corrupt practices and to know how to act in the face of corruption” he said. Against this background, the Dean stressed that “education and training are key to this and should be now the focus of international cooperation”.

He added that no country faces the challenges of the pandemic alone and this is especially true in the context of cooperative cross border projects such as the Belt and Road initiative.

Referring to UNGASS 2021, the Dean expressed hope that the session will recognize a strong connection between the challenges of Covid-19 and corruption. He added that education and training deserve to be given a very prominent position in the UNGASS 2021 declaration and this is something which IACA will be campaigning for.

A few days earlier, on 25 November, IACA together with the National Commission of Supervision of the People’s Republic of China, the United Nations Office on Drugs and Crime, and the Asian Infrastructure Investment Bank co-organized a training seminar devoted to the issue of promoting integrity and compliance in the context the Belt and Road initiative. The seminar was operated by the Research Center of Anti-Corruption and Governance of Tsinghua University. Principals of various Chinese state-owned and private enterprises participating in the Belt and Road initiative, as well as experts and scholars participated in the event.

The seminar was addressed by Dean Stelzer, who stressed that integrity must be demonstrated at the highest levels of management. “CEO’s can no longer prioritise winning at any cost, but instead must lead with integrity”, he said.

Underlining the importance of education in promoting the culture of integrity and compliance, the Dean added that in its trainings and educational activities IACA has been connecting ethics with compliance for several years now.

In addition, a representative of IACA, Mr. Harmish Goldie-Scot delivered a presentation on Good Practices in Corporate Compliance.

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