There are greater calls for more integrity and better accountability of multilateral organizations. For example, the UN itself is currently under investigation about its now defunct Iraq Oil-for-Food Programme. But independent of this, the UN had already launched an organizational Integrity Initiative in 2003. The World Bank and other international financial institutes have also received calls to improve their accountability systems.
The successful negotiation of the UN Convention against Corruption by 2003 portends a new era of international cooperation in this area. The United Nations Convention against Corruption was agreed on by an Ad Hoc Committee, established by the General Assembly in December 2000. As of May 2005, 120 countries have signed and 22 ratified the Convention. The Convention will enter into force when 30 countries have ratified it. A Conference of the States Parties has been established to promote and review implementation. The Conference will meet regularly and serve as a forum for reviewing the implementation and for facilitating activities required by the Convention.
The United Nations Convention against Corruption is the first legally binding global instrument related to corruption. As mentioned above, previously existing instruments are regional and designed to operate in a more limited environment. From a substantive view point, the Convention broke new ground with its provisions on asset recovery and prevention. Given these innovations, the Convention devotes an important part to fostering international cooperation with specific measures such as extradition and mutual legal assistance. It also recognizes that the problem of corruption goes beyond criminal conduct ...
... middle of paper ...
...ey should apply suitable safeguards to corruption, including payment of adequate public sector wages. Companies should adopt and implement codes of conduct and compliance programs. The construction industry should adopt sector-wide integrity agreements. And investors should avoid joint ventures with companies that do not comply with anticorruption laws and regulations. Finally, major construction projects should be subject to internal as well as external monitoring by civil society.
But treaties and transparency mechanisms would remain on paper only, as has happened in the past, without implementation and enforcement. The rapidly changing socio-economic environment, especially the growing demand for transparency, all around the world requires that governments review and adjust their laws and mechanisms to ensure that actual behaviour corresponds to what is expected.
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