Newsletter May 2014
International Centre for Asset Recovery (ICAR)
ICAR hosts workshop on money laundering with virtual currency: challenges and solutions
On April 2-9, ICAR hosted its first international workshop on the use of virtual currency to launder money. Held at the University of Basel, Switzerland, the workshop brought together public and private sector practitioners from countries such as France, Liechtenstein, the Netherlands, Spain, Switzerland, the United Kingdom and the United States. The workshop circled around a case study presented by the FBI, presentations by ICAR experts and interactive group discussions to identify particular challenges and potential solutions for law enforcement. As a follow up to the event, ICAR will partner with Europol and Interpol to form an international working group to further pursue this topic.
ICAR attends international conference on asset recovery in the Ukraine
On 24 April, the Ukraine Anti-Corruption Action Centre (https://antac.org.ua/) jointly with Ukrainska Prvada & GOPAC Ukraine hosted an international conference to discuss and identify challenges relating to the recovery of assets stolen by former President Yanukovych and his associates, and thereby to initiate a (inter-) national dialogue to address these challenges. ICAR spoke on modalities for the return of stolen assets, alongside senior representatives from the Ukraine government and Canada, the European Union, Switzerland and the US, as well as specialist civil society organisations. At the conclusion of the conference, the participants agreed that it was essential that any successfully recovered and returned assets ultimately benefit the victims -- considered to be the people of the country where assets have been stolen -- and that an enhanced monitoring system is critical to ensure that such returned assets are not stolen again.
Development of new financial investigation training modules for the KPK in Indonesia
In the context of ICAR's one-year multi-phase training programme in financial investigation and asset recovery for the Indonesian Corruption Eradication Commission (KPK), funded by USAID/Management Systems International, ICAR has developed a series of new training modules jointly with the International Anti-Corruption Resource Centre (IACRC). This series includes modules on financial investigation in procurement and in mega construction projects, in the oil & gas industry and in the forestry sector, as well as modules on financial investigation challenges related to the use of offshore corporate structures. Since December 2013, these new sessions have been rolled out in a series of training workshops to practitioners of the KPK, tailor-made to the Indonesian legal and institutional context.
Workshop on international cooperation in criminal matters at the 23rd Session of the Commission on Crime Prevention and Criminal Justice
On 12 May, at the 23rd Session of the Commission on Crime Prevention and Criminal Justice (CCPCJ) in Vienna, ICAR joined experts from the International Association of Prosecutors and the Korean Institute on Criminology to support a workshop on challenges of international cooperation in criminal matters. The workshop was organised by the International Institute of Higher Studies in Criminal Sciences. ICAR experts specifically presented on international cooperation challenges affecting the informal and formal processes for recovering and returning stolen assets, including issues related to dual criminality and the relevance of effective communication and coordination between requested states and requesting states and other relevant stakeholders of the asset recovery process.
New case work in East Africa and South America
ICAR has been formally mandated by two countries in East Africa and in South America to assist with their respective asset recovery casework. This assistance involves support to their respective relevant authorities with drafting mutual legal assistance requests, developing and managing effective case strategies as well as facilitating cooperation, through formal and informal channels of communication, between the requesting and requested states.
The Basel Institute hosts international training workshop on quantitative and qualitative research methods on corruption at the University of Basel
On April 28-30, the Basel Institute on Governance held a workshop on Quantitative and Qualitative Research Methods on Corruption at the University of Basel, Switzerland. The workshop brought together a group of 18 academics, practitioners from governmental and non-governmental institutions, as well as private sector compliance officers from 9 countries (Armenia, Brazil, Colombia, Germany, Greece, Indonesian, Italy, Peru and Switzerland). The interactive workshop involved structured lectures on research design and methodologies to address the challenges involved in researching corruption, as well as interactive practical group work where participants applied the concepts learned.
The next such workshop will be held in Fall 2014; exact dates will be announced on the Basel Institute's website in the summer.
Specialised training on the power and influence analysis tool to Indonesia's KPK
On 30 April-2 May, the Basel Institute provided a specialised training programme for members of the Indonesian Corruption Eradication Commission (KPK) in Basel, Switzerland. The training involved a hands-on application of the Institute's Power and Influence Analysis Tool for assessing sectoral corruption risks.
The Basel Institute offers such training workshops upon request. Should you be interested and wish to obtain more information about such workshop opportunities, please contact Ms Claudia Baez-Camargo, Head of Governance Research at: firstname.lastname@example.org
Governance field research for WHO in Moldova, Finland and Turkey
In the context of the Basel Institute's renewed collaboration agreement with the World Health Organiation (WHO) to conduct analytical research into concepts of governance and accountability, experts of the Basel Institute traveled to Finland, Moldova and Turkey to collect insights into the institutional arrangements governing the health system in these three countries. The findings from this field research will be incorporated into a final report on "strengthening health systems by improving accountability for health systems in European Member States".
Corporate Governance and Compliance
IGC completes task of overseeing FIFA's reform process
Since 2011 the Basel Institute has been acting as the Secretariat of the Independent Governance Committee (IGC). The IGC under the leadership of Professor Mark Pieth has been responsible for overseeing the reform process of the Federation Internationale de Football Association (FIFA). In December 2013, the Institute officially completed this mandate, and on 23 April 2014, the IGC published the final of a total of three reports that describe reform progress and remaining issues.
During the course of this mandate the IGC, which represents a group of renowned governance experts and football stakeholders, submitted concrete recommendations for reforms relating to greater transparency, financial controls, accountability and ethical conduct. Several of the IGC's proposals have been implemented and have already led to first tangible results; others will be voted on at the next Congress in 2014.
International Centre for Collective Action (ICCA)
ICCA is now on Twitter (@FightBribery)
In the context of further developing its comprehensive and interactive public resource hub for all matters related to Collective Action in anti-corruption (www.collective-action.com), the ICCA has set up a twitter account @FightBribery.
On 12 May 2014, the Government of Ukraine signed a Memorandum of Understanding (MoU) with the European Bank for Reconstruction and Development (EBRD), the Organisation for Economic Cooperation and Development (OECD) and several business associations, addressing bribery and promoting transparency and accountability. Mandated by the EBRD to develop a mechanism to address unfair business practices and bribery for the purpose of improving the overall business climate in Ukraine, including prospects for foreign investment, the Basel Institute assisted in the set up of this MoU. The MoU outlines the roles and responsibilities of a new independent Business Ombudsman Institution that will serve as a first point of contact for businesses enabling them to lodge complaints arising from unfair treatment of issues of corruption. The Basel Institute will continue to support and advise the parties on the details of implementation of the Business Ombudsman Institution and help it to achieve its goals.
International Conference on "Collective Action: Going Further Together to Counter Corruption", 26-27 June 2014 (Basel, Switzerland)
This conference is organized by the Basel Institute's International Centre for Collective Action (ICCA), with support from the Siemens Integrity Initiative. The Conference will be led by the President of the Basel Institute on Governance, Dr Mark Pieth, Professor of Criminal Law and Criminology of the University of Basel and former Chairman of the OECD Working Group on Bribery, and will address:
Confirmed speakers include:
Registration for this event is free of charge. To register and for more information about scheduled speakers and programme details, visit the event webpage or contact email@example.com.