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Flagpost is a blog on current issues of interest to members of the Australian Parliament

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G20 targets impact of corruption on economic growth and resilience

Ahead of the Group of Twenty (G20) meeting in Brisbane in November, G20 engagement groups are calling for the countries involved to take strategic anti-corruption and integrity action. Australia is the current chair of the G20, which was set up in 1999 in the aftermath of the Asian financial crisis.  Australia’s host year will culminate in a Leaders' Summit in Brisbane on 15-16 November 2014. G20 engagement groups—civil society (C20), business (B20), labour movement (L20), young people (Y20) and thinktanks (T20)—are recommending that anti-corruption measures remain at the forefront of G20 action plans. The proposed 2014-2015 priorities include transparency of corpo... Read more...

The latest proposal for a national integrity commission

On 13 November 2013, the Leader of the Australian Greens, Senator Christine Milne, introduced the National Integrity Commission Bill 2013 (NIC Bill). The Australian Greens have long advocated for a national integrity commission to investigate claims of misconduct and corruption across the Federal Parliament and Commonwealth agencies. The NIC Bill is very similar to a Bill introduced by Senator Bob Brown in June 2010 and reintroduced when Parliament reconvened after the August 2010 election, and to the National Integrity Commissioner Bill 2012 introduced by Adam Bandt. Those Bills lapsed without having been debated when the 43rd Parliament was prorogued. This FlagPost provides a brief overvie... Read more...

It's International Anti-Corruption Day: How does Australia measure up?

Ahead of International Anti-Corruption Day on 9 December, Transparency International released its latest annual Corruption Perceptions Index (CPI). The CPI allocates countries a score from 0 (highly corrupt) to 100 (very clean) based on the perceived extent of public sector corruption as measured by a number of data sources (13 in 2013)—principally surveys of corruption and business experts. Australia’s score dropped from 85 in 2012 to 81 in 2013, and its ranking from seventh to ninth out of 177 countries.A number of high-profile matters may have contributed to Australia’s public sector being perceived as more corrupt than previously, including:the alleged involvement of two Reserve Bank of ... Read more...

Australia’s efforts against foreign bribery – an update

The Organisation for Economic Cooperation and Development (OECD) released its latest assessment of Australia’s implementation of the OECD Convention on Combating Bribery of Foreign Public Officials in International Business Transactions (Anti-Bribery Convention) in October 2012. Outlined below is an overview of the positive and negative findings and their implications for the Australian Government.The Anti-Bribery Convention was adopted in 1997 to address the widespread phenomenon of bribery in international business transactions. It entered into force on 15 February 1999 and has been ratified by all 34 member countries of the OECD (of which Australia is one) and five other countries. The ... Read more...

Australia’s performance against Anti-corruption treaty reviewed

Australia signed the United Nations Convention against Corruption (UNCAC) in December 2003 and ratified it two years later.  A summary of the findings of the first review of Australia’s implementation of the UNCAC was released on 18 June 2012.  The review of chapters III and IV of the UNCAC coincided with the Australian Government’s development of the country’s first National Anti-Corruption Plan.  While the findings were largely positive, the reviewers also identified several challenges and areas of improvement.The UNCAC, which was adopted by the United Nations General Assembly in October 2003 and entered into force in December 2005, is the most comprehensive international treaty on corrupt... Read more...

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