International Anti-Corruption Conference 2018

Sarah Mead
TINZ Board Legal Secretary
with Delegated Authority for Environmental Governance

Sarah Meads

TINZ Board Legal Secretary

with Delegated Authority for Environmental Governance

Between 22 and 24 October, over 1800 people – including representatives from Transparency International New Zealand (TINZ) – convened in Copenhagen to participate in the 18th International Anti-Corruption Conference (IACC). The three day conference (22-24 October 2018) was a chance for people from around the world involved in the fight against corruption to come together, exchange ideas, discuss strategies and build relationships. To facilitate this engagement, the conference included plenary sessions, workshops, an anti-corruption film festival and a fair play concert.

The theme of the conference – ‘Together for Development, Peace and Security’ – highlighted the myriad of links between corruption and sustainable development. As noted in the Joint Statement of the high-level segment of the IACC, “anti-corruption measures are an integral part of the 2030 Agenda to promote sustainable development and growth”. If we are to achieve the Agenda, “long term, systemic and comprehensive anti-corruption efforts at local, national and international levels continue to be critical for progress”. The interconnected nature between corruption and various global threats, including climate change, was highlighted.

For TINZ, the conference served as an opportunity to discuss challenges and fresh strategies on issues that we have been working on domestically. For instance, the conference brought together individuals from around the world leading the campaign for a global norm of beneficial ownership. TINZ has consistently called for a public, beneficial ownership register of all legal entities to enhance transparency of New Zealand companies and trusts. The Panama Papers highlighted the importance of such a register by revealing how criminals are misusing companies and trusts in New Zealand for money laundering, tax evasion, corruption and other crimes. The conference also served as a reminder of the need to remove exceptions in our domestic legislation for facilitation payments.

The conference also saw the presentation of the Transparency International 2018 Anti-Corruption Award. In a moving ceremony, the award was presented to Spanish whistleblower and campaigner, Ana Garrido Ramos, and family members of murdered Maltese journalist Daphne Caruana Galizia. This award honours remarkable organisations and individuals, including journalists, prosecutors, government officials, and civil society leaders who expose and fight corruption. This year’s winners highlighted the crucial role citizens and journalists play in shining the light on corruption, but also the real and often fatal risks associated with doing so. Following the conference, the IACC declared a unanimous commitment “to collaborate, build coalitions and unite so we can act together to end impunity for the corrupt.”

TINZ was represented at the conference by former Governor-General and former TINZ Patron, Sir Anand Satyanand, TINZ Chair, Suzanne Snively ONZM, TINZ CEO, Julie Haggie, TINZ Director, Josephine Serrallach and TINZ Board Legal Secretary, Sarah Mead. At the conference Sir Anand presented on Prevention of corruption in the Judiciary.

Son of Assassinated Journalist Daphne Caruana Galizia accepts 2018 Anti Corruption Award for his mother
Danish Prime Minister Lars Løkke Rasmussen Opens the 2018 International Anti-Corruption Conference
2018 International Anti-Corruption Conference opening plenary

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