UN Anti-Corruption Conference Plans to Fight Global Corruption

Conference of the States Parties to the United Nations Convention against Corruption. Photo: UNODC
Conference of the States Parties to the United Nations Convention against Corruption. Photo: UNODC

The eighth session of the Conference of the States Parties to the United Nations Convention against Corruption (UNCAC) – COSP8 – concluded on December 20 in Abu Dhabi, United Arab Emirates.

The five-day conference that took place from 16 to 20 December 2019 passed resolutions on strengthening prevention and the work of anti-corruption bodies, improving data collection, and more.

Preparations for the first-ever UN General Assembly special session against corruption in April 2021 were also agreed in a resolution that will be recommended for adoption by the General Assembly.

“This session of the world’s most representative conference on this universal and comprehensive legal instrument against corruption has reaffirmed and renewed the commitment of the international community to prevent and fight this crime,” said Executive Director of the United Nations Office on Drugs and Crime (UNODC), Yury Fedotov, in his closing remarks.

“Your achievements can help to ensure that work through the Convention against Corruption makes a decisive contribution as we enter this decade to deliver on the Sustainable Development Goals.”

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Fifteen resolutions were adopted during the session, addressing the work of anti-corruption and audit bodies, financial intelligence units and parliaments, as well as issues including public sector integrity and public awareness, challenges of small island developing states, prevention, asset recovery, bribery, measuring corruption, environmental crime, and corruption in sports.

The Conference also agreed to continue work under the second cycle of the Convention’s implementation review mechanism covering prevention and asset recovery.

The Convention against Corruption, with 186 parties, is the only legally binding universal anti-corruption instrument. Every two years, the States parties to the Convention meet, with the ninth session scheduled to take place in 2021 in Egypt.

Some 46 special events were held on the margins of the conference, including a series of sessions on the work of the World Bank-UNODC Stolen Assets Recovery Initiative.

UNODC, in partnership with the Government of Nigeria, also presented the Second Survey on Corruption in Nigeria, which examines prevalence and frequency of bribe-seeking behavior experienced by Nigerians.

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Rakesh Raman

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