High-level reporting: overcoming extortion

To overcome corruption it is essential to combat extortion as well as bribery. There has been steady progress in curbing bribery through national laws implementing the OECD Anti-Bribery Convention.  

Extortion has not received comparable attention. Neither the OECD Anti-Bribery Convention nor the US Foreign Corrupt Practices Act, the most widely enforced anti-corruption law, covers extortion. Extortion is covered by the UN Convention against Corruption, but implementation of that convention is still at an early stage.

Lack of effective action against extortion impairs the whole fight against corruption. Extortion and bribery are intimately connected, representing the two sides of every corrupt transaction. 

The concept of high-level reporting mechanisms represents an innovative approach to dealing with the demand side of bribery. Pilot projects are important for demonstrating how well such mechanisms work in practice. After two years of experiences has been obtained, a review should be conducted, including identification of best practices. 

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Basel Institute on Governance
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