UNCAC Coalition Newsletter April 2017

Opening words

Message from the UNCAC Coalition Chair

Manzoor Hasan, 12 April 2017

At the beginning of 2017 we have seen tremendous changes in politics in the West. From President Trump taking office in the White House to the United Kingdom’s triggering of Article 50, notifying the European Union of its intention to leave, the implications of these changes are yet to be fully felt or understood. Continue reading →

Focus on asset recovery

Interview with J.C. Weliamuna on Sri Lanka’s asset recovery efforts

J.C. Weliamuna is a human rights lawyer and President of the Sri Lankan Presidential Task Force on Stolen Assets Recovery. He is former executive director of Transparency International Sri Lanka and a former member of the International Board of Transparency International. Representing the Presidential Task Force, he participated in two meetings on asset recovery that took place in February in Addis Ababa and Lausanne. Continue reading →

Recovery of stolen assets in Ukraine: Losing time and money

Tetiana Shevchuk, 11 April 2017

Three years ago the ousted President of Ukraine, Viktor Yanukovych, and his close associates (so called the “Family”) fled the country. Given that they are under investigation for embezzlement and misuse of public funds, the public had high expectations that any money stolen by them would soon return to Ukraine. Continue reading →

UNCAC Coalition letter to UN meeting on management and disposal of stolen assets

On 14-16th February 2017, the International Expert Meeting on the management and disposal of stolen assets took place in Addis Ababa. The meeting provided an opportunity for asset recovery experts and development practitioners to come together and recognise the impact of corruption on economic and social development and the role asset recovery could have in providing resources to meet the Sustainable Development Goals. Continue reading →

Focus on beneficial ownership transparency

The world’s laundromats

Paul Radu, 11 April 2017

Three years ago, the Organized Crime and Corruption Reporting Project (OCCRP) exposed the “Russian Laundromat” – an immense financial fraud scheme that enabled vast sums to be pumped out of Russia. The money, totalling more than US$20 billion, was laundered and moved into Europe and beyond through bribery and a clever exploitation of the legal and banking systems in the Republic of Moldova and Latvia. Continue reading →

Pushing for beneficial ownership transparency in Europe

Andreas Pavlou, 10 April 2017

Earlier this year, the European Parliament’s Economic and Monetary Affairs and Civil Liberties committees voted to strengthen beneficial ownership transparency rules across the European Union as part of the current revision to the 4th EU Anti-Money Laundering Directive. Continue reading →

One year after the Panama Papers: A new tool to find out who owns companies

Zosia Sztykowski, 7 April 2017

The Panama Papers leak ignited political will for corporate transparency and led to a number of commitments by countries around the world to establish central, public registers of beneficial ownership. The public nature of these registers was deemed critical to allowing access to the information for all potential users, including civil society watchdogs and business. Continue reading →

Lifting the veil on who owns companies will help combat corruption in Australia

Serena Lillywhite, 7 April 2017

Having lived in Cambodia, I have seen first-hand the impacts of poor transparency and elite capture of corporate ownership and benefits. Yet this is far from being just a developing country problem, it is a global one. Continue reading →

Update from members: the second review cycle

Second review cycle: Nine months in

Nine months into the second review cycle of the UNCAC review process, we have been asking members in the countries participating about their experiences so far. Continue reading →

Successful civil society training in Nigeria on the UNCAC review mechanism and the Open Government Partnership

David Ugolor, 12 April 2017

The Africa Network for Environmental and Economic Justice (ANEEJ) is working to enhance the capacity of civil society including journalists to support the Nigerian government in its efforts related to the UNCAC review mechanism and the Open Government Partnership (OGP). Continue reading →

Special topics

UNCAC: Wake up to open contracting! How the digital revolution can prevent corruption in procurement

Gavin Hayman, 7 April 2017

I am embarrassed to say that I can remember, over a decade ago, when the UN Convention against Corruption was new and – believe it or not – relatively exciting. It wasn’t just one of the first international instruments to outlaw bribery, it also recognised and attempted to address some of the key corruption risks in government. Continue reading →

Beyond the scandals: The status of revolving doors in the EU

Margarida Silva, 7 April 2017

When discussing corruption we often just imagine shady scenarios where money changes hands. However, public scandals like that involving former President Barroso have raised people’s attention to the threat of conflicts of interest created by revolving doors. Continue reading →

Coalition in partnership

CSOs call for action in implementing UNCAC in the ASEAN

The regional conference on Fast-tracking Implementation of United Nations Convention Against Corruption (UNCAC) for Economic and Social Development in Southeast Asia that took place in Bangkok from 31 January to 3 February came at a pivotal time, as ASEAN (the association of Southeast Asian nations) turns 50 this year. Continue reading →

Member in the spotlight

Ligue Congolaise de lutte contre la corruption

Our mission is to combat corruption and promote transparency and accountability with the participation of the population of the Democratic Republic of Congo (DRC). We also aim to mobilise citizens to fight corruption and corruption-related impunity. Continue reading →

Calendar of events

  • 22-26 May 2017: UN Commission on Crime Prevention and Criminal Justice, Vienna, Austria
  • 19-23 June 2017: UNCAC Implementation Review Group Meeting and Briefing for NGOs, Vienna, Austria
  • 11-14 July 2017: Global Forum on Asset Recovery, Washington DC, USA
  • 21-23 August 2017: Working Group on Asset Recovery, Vienna, Austria
  • 24-25 August 2017: Working Group on Prevention of Corruption, Vienna, Austria
  • 6-7 November 2017: Open-ended Working Group on International Cooperation, Vienna, Austria
  • 6-10 November 2017: UNCAC Conference of States Parties, Vienna, Austria
  • 7-8 November 2017: UNODC resumed Implementation Review Group, Vienna, Austria

See additional dates here.

Useful resources

Access all Areas: When EU Politicians Become Lobbyists

In this first comprehensive analysis of the revolving doors between EU institutions and other sectors, Transparency International EU has analysed the career paths of 485 members of the European Parliament and 27 Commissioners. It highlights concerns about conflicts of interest beyond the individual scandals and provides recommendations for reform to the European Commissioners, Members of the European Parliament and the staff of EU institutions more generally.

Read the Transparency International EU Access All Areas Report, January 2017.

Anti-bribery and Corruption Benchmarking Report 2017

A report by Kroll and the Ethisphere Institute based on the survey responses of senior executives working in ethics, compliance or anti-corruption. It finds that reputational risk is high on the agenda of executives around the world and that 57 per cent expected their organisational risk to persist in 2017.

Read the Kroll and Ethicsphere Institute Anti-bribery and Corruption Benchmarking Report, March 2017.

Doors Wide Open: Corruption in Real Estate in Four Key Markets

This 2017 title from Transparency International investigates how real estate is used to launder the proceeds of crime and corruption. Focusing on Australia, Canada, the UK and the US markets, it tells a compelling story and presents recommendations for cleaning up the real estate sector.

Read the Transparency International Doors Wide Open Report, March 2017.

On Combatting Corruption and Fostering Integrity

In a report by the High Level Advisory Group on Anti-Corruption and Integrity, the OECD has published recommendations to help it strengthen its work in combatting corruption and fostering integrity. It focuses on improving existing regulations, developing new international benchmarks and enhancing coordination.

Read the OECD On Combatting Corruption and Fostering Integrity Report, March 2017.

UNCAC review reports

There are now 150 executive summaries, 71 full country reports and 15 self-assessments from the first review cycle published on the UNODC website on the Country Profiles page.

Official country reports are available on both the UNODC website (linked above) and on the UNCAC Coalition website (currently being updated).

UNCAC Coalition regional platforms

The UNCAC Coalition has two new regional platforms for sharing experiences and corruption-monitoring methodologies, building partnerships and exchanging updates about the status of UNCAC reviews.

See our South-East Europe Anti-Corruption Platform here.

See our African Region Anti-Corruption Platform here.

This UNCAC Coalition Newsletter was produced by Gillian Dell, Transparency International Secretariat and Rebecca Dobson, editor, with assistance from Kai Chan, web developer.

Contact us at: email hidden; JavaScript is required
Twitter: @uncaccoalition

The UNCAC Coalition Newsletter is funded by the Sigrid Rausing Trust.