G20 Anti-corruption Action Plan Seeks Transparency

first_imgBy the summit’s end, though, China made no attempt to block the action plan or suppress use of the word “bribery.” The push at the 2014 Brisbane meeting was for member nations to pass laws compelling corporations to identify who owns and controls them – the “beneficial owners.”  It, however, fell short of demanding that these persons and entities be known to the public as well as regulatory authorities. That has drawn criticism from some “good governance” groups, including Global Financial Integrity. “G20 countries recognize that bribery imposes a heavy price on both international business and society as a whole,” the action plan document said. “Combating bribery remains an important priority for the G20 growth agenda, including by helping to level the playing field for business, and giving the private sector the confidence it needs to invest…G20 countries also commit to comprehensively and effectively criminalize bribery – as well as the solicitation of bribes – and enforce such laws through civil and criminal actions.” Public official immunity – meaning persons in office are not prosecuted while in those positions – is a practice seen in many countries. It has been widely criticized by good governance groups as a means by which elected officials can engage in criminal activities such as corruption and get away with it – at least during their terms. “The Chinese people are generally far less concerned about foreign bribery than domestic bribery,” said Andrew Spalding, a law professor at the University of Richmond. “As the developed world increasingly enforces foreign bribery rules, this puts them at a competitive disadvantage in developing countries, especially in Africa. China knows that it can exploit this.” The G20 nations, comprising the world’s largest economies, met in mid-November in Brisbane, Australia, and came up with an action plan on how to fight corruption. Ahead of the summit, some observers voiced concerns that China would block action regarding identifying corporate owners. China’s use of “inducements” has been well known, especially in Africa, where the Asian giant has employed cash and other means to gain access to raw materials it needs to feed its industrial production. The plan is an outgrowth of what happened in 2010 when G20 leaders created the “Anti-Corruption Working Group” at a summit in Toronto. “For companies in any of these industries, it is the areas of interaction between private and public sectors which are most likely to generate opportunities for corruption – for example, public procurement and customs,” wrote Brook Horowitz in the FCPA Blog, which focuses on corruption. Public sector transparency and integrity is also a focus of the G20 plan. They are essential for “preventing the misuse or diversion of public funds and conflicts of interest, which can have a significant negative impact on economic growth and development,” the plan said.  The plan also addressed what it calls “high risk sectors” where corruption can invade legitimate market activity. The plan notes one area it calls “the extractive sector” – the mining and collection of raw materials from iron ore to timber. Another section calls for G20 members to approach the anti-corruption fight globally as well as within each state’s borders. The plan says they must “commit to helping to end impunity for corruption offenses, by working together to investigate and prosecute [offenders], to recover the proceeds of such offenses, and to deny entry and safe haven to corrupt officials and those who corrupt them – including mutual legal assistance and extradition consistent with the UNCAC [United Nations Convention Against Corruption]”Greg Thompson, with Transparency International Australia, says now that the words of the 2014 G20 Summit have been put to paper, it’s time to carry them out. “Effectively preventing and combating corruption in these high-risk sectors is essential to create an environment conducive to investment and to ensure critical assets and resources are not diverted away from economic growth and development,” the plan said. The Action Plan also calls on the private sector to adopt transparent and accountable standards of corporate behavior. It calls on G20 countries to institute and step up “developing anti-corruption education and training for business – and by examining best practices for encouraging businesses to implement robust compliance programs and self-report breaches of corruption laws.” “The devil,” he says “will now be in the detail of what every country – including Australia – does post-Brisbane to implement these actions.”Share this:Click to share on Twitter (Opens in new window)Click to share on Facebook (Opens in new window)last_img read more

Cal Poly’s Cook among region’s best

first_img ALL-SCIAC The all-Southern California Intercollegiate Athletic Conference honors for basketball were released Wednesday, and players from local schools were well-represented on both teams. On the women’s side, conference champion La Verne produced the player of the year, sophomore Trenecca Jones (Chaffey High School), first-team junior Marissa Raya and second-team junior Lindsey Shiomi. Jones also earned SCIAC athlete of the week honors on March 1 after leading the conference in scoring, rebounding and field-goal percentage. Pomona-Pitzer senior Alana Casner won the Ed Baldwin Award for sportsmanship, while Claremont-Mudd-Scripps senior Lana Young (first team), and freshman Cameron Hanson and sophomore Jocelyn Woolsey (second team) were also honored. For the SCIAC men, Pomona-Pitzer senior David Knowles earned the Ted Ducey Award for sportsmanship and was a first-team selection, while junior teammate Jabarri Reynolds was a second-team pick. Cook was one of five named to the second-team all-regional squad, which also included Upland product Prentice Harris of Cal State San Bernardino. Cook led the Broncos in scoring during the regular season, scoring 17.9 points per game. The awards are starting to accumulate for Cal Poly Pomona senior guard Dion Cook. One day after earning a first-team all-California Collegiate Athletic Association honors, Cook was named to the Daktronics West Regional Team. center_img CMS was represented with first-team junior Mani Maceira. CHAFFEY BASKETBALL The Chaffey College men’s and women’s basketball teams, both with solid seasons, were well-represented on the all-Foothill Conference teams. For the men, sophomores Alwyn Jordan and Bobby Kovach made the first team, while sophomores Brandon Price and Jamar Berry were honorable mention. Sophomore Lillie Parks and freshman Christina Warren made the women’s first team, while freshman Carly Horine was an honorable mention selection. CAL POLY BASKETBALL Some Cal Poly players were surprised about their awards when the all-CCAA awards came out Tuesday. “I am surprised,” said junior Vanessa Dominguez, a second-team selection. “It’s exciting and it’s nice to know that other coaches recognize what you’re doing.” Donnelle Booker was surprised he got conference freshman of the year honors. “I’m honored to be freshman of the year,” he said. “I didn’t know who the competition was, I was just focused on winning.” Booker joins teammate Larry Gordon, a first-team selection this year, as back-to-back freshmen of the year honorees. “I guess part is recruiting well and part is out of necessity (to play),” coach Greg Kamansky said. “Donnelle did a great job.” Booker averaged 5.8 points, 4.7 rebounds and a team-leading 0.9 blocked shots. 160Want local news?Sign up for the Localist and stay informed Something went wrong. Please try again.subscribeCongratulations! You’re all set!last_img read more