Thu, 31 Jan 2008
Thursday, 31 January, 2008 | 16:27 WIB

TEMPO Interactive, Jakarta: The business world forum in the Second-Round Conference on the United Nations Convention of Anti-Corruption (UNCAC) yesterday (30/1) said it considered that the efforts to tackle corruption in the business sector were still not yet adequate.

Chui Ki Jo, an UN Global Compact Coordinator, said, “So far the efforts to tackle corruption in this sector have not been strong enough.”

A similar opinion was conveyed by General Electric's consultant and International Chamber of Commerce (ICC) deputy chairman, Fritz Heimman.

He stressed that there should be a mechanism to verify and confirm a company's commitment in implementing the Global Compact.

“Our job is still far from done,” he said.

Yesterday, the conference which was held at the Bali International Convention Centre, Nusa Dua, continued for its third day.

Opened last Monday (30/1), the meeting will end this Friday (1/2).

There were 1,000 participants listed from more than 118 countries.

One of the most important breakthroughs at the UNCAC was categorizing bribery practices and embezzlement in the private sector as corruption.

This important measure was started in 2000, when the Global Compact was launched.

Global Compact is a company pact and global network that was initiated by the UN for involving the business world in fighting against corruption.

The initiative was resulted from the awareness that it is only possible to eradicate corruption if it also involves the private sector and is not only focused on bureaucracy.

“It takes two to tango,” said Michael Pedersen from the World Economic Forum (WEF) or Partnering Against Corruption Initiative (PACI).

So far more than 3,700 companies from 120 countries have signed the Global Compact.

From Indonesia, so fat only 58 institutions and companies have signed it.

Application in the field still has several obstructions.

The conference chairman, Michael Kennedy from a New York lawfFirm, recorded that up until now there has not even been any agreement to define corruption.

For example, regarding “facilitating payments” or bribery in small amounts to smoothen the regular administration process in the governance.

Transparency International and UN categorized these as a bribery, while PACI and ICC do not.

In addition, the forum agreed that the private sector's awareness to join fighting corruption is increasing significantly.

Business players are aware that corruption distorts markets and reduces the certainty of business.

A PACI survey shows that 90 percent of respondent companies stated having owned an internal anti-corruption system.

Top management of Siemens, a telecommunication giant which was accused of corruption and tax fraud last year, has declared a target of zero-percent tolerance for corruption.

In 2004 business players in the Philippines established the Philippines Integrity Fund (PIF) to support the efforts of reducing corruption in the public sector.

KARANIYA DHARMASAPUTRA



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