steming flows of corruption

TINZ Chair Attends Business Integrity Project and Financial Integrity Workshops in Berlin

March 24-26th, TINZ Chair, Suzanne Snively, attended the Business Integrity (BIP) Workshop in Berlin followed on 27 March by a Financial Integrity Workshop: Tackling Corrupt Financial Flows hosted by Transparency International in Berlin with funding from the Seimen’s Integrity Initiative. Participants made up an international working team to develop integrity systems for clean business and financial systems.

Conference attendance was across a range of Chapters including four of the BRICS (Brazil, Russia, India and South Africa, but not China),Germany, France, Netherlands, Spain, Sweden, Japan, the UK, Ukraine, US, Cambodia, Malaysia, Vietnam, Mongolia, Morocco, Isreal, Argentina, Chile, Colombia and 18 others. Not present were Australia, Canada and Taiwan.

The overall goal of Transparency International’s Business Integrity Programme is to reduce corruption through improved integrity, transparency and accountability in business.

To progress this goal, the BIP operates to promote integrity, transparency and accountability through:

  • legal and regulatory frameworks
  • industry sector groups
  • individual business

The Seimen’s Grant will enable TI to broaden and grow the business integrity work, while building a sustainable portfolio of projects and funders for the longer term.

A key theme shared by the participants at the workshop was that a particularly effective way of progressing business integrity was to work to engage business leaders who understood that adopting anti-bribery principles, practices and programme was good for business and who would assist the Chapters in communicating this message to their local business and industry groups.

Among the topics covered in the Financial Integrity Workshop sessions included future-oriented banking, ending secrecy to end impunity and to trace beneficial owners, the role of due diligence and PEPs.

Future-oriented Banking

A discussion of the banking system and approaches to working with Banks to adopt processes that protect the public through greater transparency in conduct and by preventing large deposits of money from questionable sources.

Ending Secrecy to End Impunity: Tracing The Beneficial Owner

Issues discussed included requirements for information about the beneficial ownership of companies. Further discussion was around thelack of transparency of shell companies - where current laws do not require those forming a company to report who has ultimate control. This creates loopholes in efforts to fight money laundering.

Regulating Luxury Investments: What Dirty Money Can’t Buy

Luxury goods and real estate are among the preferred means for corrupt individuals to hide the illicit origin of their funds. There was discussion about how to specify and regulatee luxury investments.

Closing Banks to The Corrupt: The Role of Due Diligence And Peps

Banks provide one of the stopping places for ill-gotten monies. Until now, financial institutions and their regulatory authorities have failed to prevent Banks from being a safe place for the corrupt. The workshop discussed steps towards closing this loophole.

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