U.S. Announces Funding Opportunity for Anti-Corruption Efforts in ASEAN

U.S. Secretary of State Antony Blinken. Photo: Department of State
U.S. Secretary of State Antony Blinken. Photo: Department of State

Proposals should identify opportunities for the U.S. government to be substantially involved in partnerships, public events, or other activities.

The U.S. Department of State, Bureau of Democracy, Human Rights and Labor (DRL) has announced an open competition for organizations interested in submitting applications for a regional project that strengthens anti-corruption efforts of the Association of Southeast Asian Nations (ASEAN) and ASEAN Member States.

All 10 ASEAN Member States have ratified the UN Convention Against Corruption (UNCAC) and all ASEAN Heads of State have adopted the ASEAN 2025 Political-Security Community Blueprint as part of ASEAN 2025: Forging Ahead Together.

The ASEAN 2025 Political-Security Community Blueprint calls for, inter-alia,

  • Promoting ASEAN cooperation in implementing the UNCAC to prevent and combat corruption;
  • Implementing the Memorandum of Understanding on Cooperation for Preventing and Combating Corruption;
  • Strengthening the implementation of domestic laws and regulations against corruption and of anti-corruption practices in both the public and private sectors within ASEAN, including:

– through capacity building programs;

– intensifying cooperation in the area of asset recovery and in denying safe havens to those found guilty of corruption within the framework of applicable national and international laws to combat corruption;

– encouraging the strengthening of the South East Asia Parties Against Corruption network (now known as the ASEAN Parties Against Corruption; ASEAN-PAC);

– promoting the sharing of experiences, best practices, and exchanging of views on ethics, values, and the culture of integrity to strengthen anti-corruption activities, including through the ASEAN Integrity Dialogue; as well as promoting outreach and joint activities between relevant ASEAN Bodies and ASEAN stakeholders, including youth and civil society organizations, at the national and regional levels.

DRL seeks projects that engage both at the regional level with ASEAN and ASEAN-affiliated entities as well as at the national and/or sub-national level within ASEAN Member States and with civil society organizations to strengthen anti-corruption efforts and make progress on ASEAN commitments and obligations under ASEAN 2025: Forging Ahead Together.

Proposals should identify opportunities, where appropriate, for the U.S. government to be substantially involved in partnerships, public events, or other activities to highlight U.S. government support for anti-corruption efforts.

According to the announcement, the application deadline is June 7, 2021 and the funding ceiling will be $1,500,000. The anticipated number of awards will be 1 – 2.

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Rakesh Raman