The G8’s statement on Fighting High-Level Corruption points to a maturing understanding of corruption and numbered days for impunity of public officials. The statements on oil and on Africa contain nods to the requisite initiatives, but are short on detail and lack concrete commitments.
Fighting High-Level Corruption
Transparency International (TI) welcomes the G8 recognition of the horrendous effects of corruption on development, democratic governance and the rule of law, but they must do more. Canada, Germany, Italy, Japan and the United States should ratify the United Nations Convention against Corruption (UNCAC) without further delay and support robust monitoring. Canada, Italy, Japan, the UK and Russia must enforce the foreign bribery prohibition contained in the OECD Convention and UNCAC. The G8 cannot prescribe anti-corruption and transparency measures that they themselves have not followed.
Although transparency and anti-corruption measures in the oil sector were mentioned, where were the specific measurable steps? Awareness and recognition of the need for these measures is a positive development, but real progress will only come when G8 countries hold themselves to specific targets.
The summit missed the chance to offer hope for the world’s poor. A fraction of the momentum of recent years was carried forward in the G8’s Update on Africa. Within that, Transparency International welcomes the G8’s reaffirmed support for the African Peer Review Mechanism (for monitoring governance progress), transparency in oil and gas, and the United Nations Convention against Corruption. Recovery of stolen assets, making revenue streams transparent and implementing anti-corruption instruments are the key ways to ensure development and investment that fulfils the promise of a better future for the continent.
Chancellor Merkel today indicated today that the G8 will tackle global poverty next year. Transparency International calls on the German government to ensure that governance and development are at the heart of the agenda for next year’s summit and to ensure a participative process, starting now, in which civil society feeds into the programme for 2007.
Transparency International is the global civil society organisation leading the fight against corruption.
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