Good governance and anti-corruption
The Ministry for Foreign Affairs Anticorruption policy is one of zero tolerance. The Ministry for Foreign Affairs shall not tolerate the fraudulent and corrupt use of funds and resources by any parties concerned. The Ministry for Foreign Affairs is equally committed to maintaining its reputation as an organization that will not tolerate abuse of position for personal or organizational gain.
Zero tolerance does not mean zero risks. Finnish development co-operation takes place in environments with a high risk of corruption. In order to decrease the risk of corruption and guarantee aid effectiveness, one has to be aware of the potential risks caused by corruption in development interventions.
Governance assessments provide an efficient diagnostic tool for identifying the nature and amount of corruption in a given country context. There are several governance assessments available but as the first priority one should use the EU governance profile when available. EU governance profile represents a common EU view on the governance situation of the country in question. Governance assessments give an idea of the amount of political will for development co-operation in the country. The following governance assessments should be used for maximum in political dialogue with the partner countries and in operational activities to decrease the risk of corruption:
1) European Union: Governance Profile (ACP Countries)
2) World Bank: Country Policy and Institutional Assessment
3) World Bank Institute: World Governance Indicators
4) AU: African Peer Review Mechanism
Poor governance is widely recognized as the root cause of various systemic inefficiencies and corruption. From a sector perspective, the key elements that define the sector governance environment can be broadly grouped under 5 dimensions namely:
- Policy and Legislation
- Institutional Arrangements
- Budgeting and investment planning
- Public procurement
- Access and rights of service
Sectoral governance assessment should be always prepared before starting a sector wide programme in a country in order to efficiently tackle the problem of corruption.
UNCAC – United Nations Convention against Corruption
The United Nation Convention against Corruption is the first fully global anticorruption treaty. It represents a remarkable achievement: a global response to a global problem and it recognizes the importance of both preventive and punitive measures in anticorruption work. UNCAC covers anyone who holds a legislative, administrative, or executive office, or provides public service, including employees of private companies under government contract. The Ministry for Foreign Affairs applies UNCAC in its full content.
UNCAC’s holistic approach calls for attention to both supply and demand sides of corruption. It is a useful tool in political dialogue since it provides a more neutral basis for dialogue with the partner governments. UNCAC also plays a crucial role in sector level programmes. One should pay attention to the stipulations of UNCAC through the whole project management cycle and understand how UNCAC can be pursued in the development programmes of Finland.
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