Anti-Corruption Forum on International Development Cooperation
21 July 2022
Remarks by Siddharth Chatterjee, UN Resident Coordinator in China
Your Excellency, Mr. Luo Zhaohui, Chairman, China International Development Cooperation Agency,
Your Excellency, Mr. Qian Keming, Vice Minister of Commerce of the People’s Republic of China,
Your Excellency, Mr. Ban Ki-moon, Former Secretary-General of the United Nations,
Excellencies, Distinguished Guests,
I start by thanking the China International Development Cooperation (CIDCA) and the Ministry of Commerce of the People’s Republic of China for the invitation to address the Anti-Corruption Forum on International Development Cooperation.
As a complex social, political, and economic phenomenon, corruption affects all countries – slowing economic development and contributing to government instability. The United Nations Convention against Corruption (UNCAC) is the only legally binding universal anti-corruption instrument, with the Convention entering into force for China on 12 February 2006. A memorandum of understanding was also signed by the United Nations and the National Commission of Supervision of the PRC in 2019, to strengthen cooperation on the implementation of UNCAC.
Combatting corruption and promoting just, peaceful and inclusive societies can unlock progress towards the Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) to achieve the transformative promise of the 2030 Agenda for Sustainable Development and address our interconnected challenges – helping to protect our planet, creating jobs, achieving gender equality and securing universal access to essential services such as healthcare and education.
It is undeniable that misconduct and wrongdoing are stealing away valuable resources that are badly needed to support the recovery of a resilient society and sustainable economy following the COVID-19 pandemic. Corruption during this crisis has undermined good governance globally, triggering a further deterioration in the world’s efforts to achieve the SDGs.
Thus, it is essential that in the global cooperation framework, development partners can establish a mutual understanding of codes of conduct and reach further consensus to encourage multilateral cooperation.
Caption: Siddharth Chatterjee, UN Resident Coordinator in China, at the Anti-Corruption Forum on International Development Cooperation
I note China’s remarkable achievements in overcoming its own development challenges and its support provided to other developing countries through international cooperation.
Domestically, China has conducted a long-term anti-corruption programme and implemented the National Programme of Action for Child Development (2011-2020), the Law on the Protection of Minors and the National Plan of Action on Combating Trafficking in Persons (2013-2020).
China should continue efforts to promote and enforce non-discriminatory laws and policies for sustainable development, to ensure responsive, inclusive, participatory and representative decision-making at all levels, and to ensure public access to information.
Ladies and Gentlemen,
As the UN Secretary-General, Mr. António Guterres, said, “Corruption is criminal, immoral and the ultimate betrayal of public trust…We must work together to stop such thievery and exploitation by clamping down on illicit financial flows and tax havens; tackling the vested interests that benefit from secrecy and corruption; and exercising utmost vigilance over how resources are spent nationally. Together, we must create more robust systems for accountability, transparency and integrity without delay”.
The UN in China stands ready to support the Government of China, in making China’s global development cooperation framework fully aligned with relevant international norms and standards. As President Xi Jinping recently noted, “the North and the South need to work in the same direction to forge a united, equal, balanced and inclusive global development partnership. In this process, no country or individual should be left behind”.
It is time for action, to also build healthy and transparent global development partnerships.
Thank you, Excellencies, for the productive deliberations at today’s conference.