What we are up to…

TI IPP Project kicks off

Transparency International New Zealand (TINZ) Board and staff are excited to be finalising an agreement for Phase II of the TI Indo Pacific Partnership, a five year programme of work with TI global.  This programme of around NZ $500,000 is designed to use TINZ expertise to support Pacific endeavours to counter corruption and promote integrity and transparency.   

TINZ’s contract includes a range of research and awareness-raising activities over the next five years including knowledge exchanges on topics such as budget transparency, environmental governance, procurement and anti-money laundering.  

TINZ will do short research pieces and briefing papers on several topics - opaque financial systems that enable illicit finances to move around the Pacific; another on the base of corruption that drives migrant exploitation and sexploitation; and also on bribery and how to counter it. We will collaborate with others on a programme to improve political integrity including promoting more women into political leadership positions; and the risks to democratic processes from online corrupt practices.  

We will also contribute to advocacy ahead of key regional meetings.

Francois Valerian Global TI Chair to visit New Zealand

This visit will coincide with anti-corruption workshops and the launch of our National Integrity Assessment work on anti-corruption institutions in NZ.

Francois Valerian, global chairperson of the Transparency International Movement is visiting Oceania in August as part of that commitment to spend time with chapters.  Francois will be in New Zealand for two days in late August. A highlight of Francois’ trip will be two anti-corruption workshops, one in Auckland and one in Wellington.  

At the Wellington event Francois will help launch the first part of TINZ’s National Integrity System Assessment. This part focuses on the effectiveness of anti-corruption institutions in New Zealand in deterring, detecting and exposing corruption, currently being researched by Simon Chapple.

TINZ will be in touch with members directly about opportunities to meet Francois online or in person including the two workshops.

Here is a link to an interview with Francois at the recent International Anti-Corruption Conference in Vilnius.


Papua New Guinea

Transparency International's Pacific chapters have been actively highlighting corruption risks and promoting anti-corruption.  Last week Transparency International Papua New Guinea (TI PNG) organised its anti-corruption walk - the Sir Anthony Siaguru 2024 Walk Against Corruption.

This is the first time since COVID that the walk has been held.  As well as being a major fundraiser for the chapter it is an opportunity for local businesses, public sector agencies, schools, NGOs and individuals to show their public commitment to the fight against corruption.

TI PNG is currently running its Mike Manning Youth Democracy Camp 2024.   This is TI PNG’s flagship youth event.  These camps are a combination of interactive learning and simulated activities during which participants learn about the basic principles of democracy and good governance through hands-on practice of passing laws and conducting elections.  

The camp provides a safe and supportive environment for young people to develop their leadership skills, make their voices heard and learn about the challenges and opportunities of governance.

TI Australia 

TI Australia worked with KordaMentha to publish a report looking at the effect of money laundering via real estate. Stopping dirty money in Australia and Cambodia:  Combatting money laundering into Australia’s real estate sector through partnership.

In this report, Transparency International Australia (TIA) in partnership with KordaMentha (an investment advisory group), consider the money laundering vulnerabilities that exist in Cambodia and Australia and the gaps in the relevant Anti-Money Laundering (AML) regimes that make Australia an ideal destination for regional foreign proceeds and illicit funds. 

The timing of this report coincides with Australia’s consultation on the ‘Tranche 2’ reforms, the proposed amendments that would extend obligations under the AML/CTF legislation to real estate agents, lawyers, accountants, trust and company service providers and dealers in precious metals and stones.

Organised Crime in the Pacific

We recommend you read the Pacific facing paper series from the Global Initiative against Transnational Organised Crime (GI-TOC) and watch their webinar Rising organised criminality in the Pacific islands – What drives it?

The GI-TOC’s Pacific Programme is mapping how organised crime is impacting the Pacific Islands and exploring the different criminal actors driving illicit activities.

Building and expanding on the analysis in the Global Organized Crime Index, the GI-TOC has undertaken to map trends in organised criminality in the Pacific (Oceania). The resulting papers contribute to filling some of the gaps in a region where crime-related data can be scarce. 

In turn, these analyses allow us to identify vulnerabilities as well as opportunities for intervention and mitigation.

The Pacific Islands now occupy a more prominent place on the international strategic chessboard as a result of the proliferation of trade, diplomatic and security engagements in the region in the 21st century.  There is now  greater foreign presence and influence in Micronesia, Melanesia and Polynesia, and intensifying geopolitical competition among external partners. This reality, alongside greater connectivity and market trends, is drastically transforming the criminal landscape.

Pacific Islands have traditionally been considered mostly immune from high levels of criminality due to their geographic remoteness. However, highly pernicious illicit markets are taking hold, and the islands are becoming increasingly vulnerable to new threats including a drastic rise in cyber-enabled and cyber-dependent crimes and the introduction of new narcotics.

Who is behind these activities?

There are multiple criminal actors present and active in the Pacific islands, but the most pervasive are foreign actors.  Within the foreign actor sub-set, there are a diverse array of nationalities and sectors. The one thing they have in common is their pivotal role vis-a-vis evolving crime dynamics.

Lobbying Code of Conduct

TINZ continues to speak out about the proposed lobbying code of conduct.  See Meaningless’ political lobbying code plan unravels and Modified political lobbying code planned slammed by transparency advocates.

Facial Recognition Webinar

The New Zealand Council for Civil Liberties is holding a webinar on 10 July: Facial recognition and the NZ Police. You can register at the link.

The featured speaker is Andrew Chen from the Police Technology Assurance team. This is the team that the Police use to assess new technologies for ethical and privacy issues. 

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