Representatives from nine leading Collective Action initiatives that offer local anti-corruption compliance certification gathered yesterday at a virtual roundtable. The event was part of a wider Basel Institute's project on certification initiatives funded by the KBA-NotaSys Integrity Fund.

The idea is to support local certification of anti-corruption compliance programmes in particular in small and medium-sized enterprises (SMEs) that supply larger customers.

The project aims to change the dynamics of the interaction between business and tax administrations and to deepen the cooperation between tax authorities and other law enforcement agencies in countering tax evasion and other financial crimes. The project would promote the concepts of good tax governance and the importance of a transparent tax system for economic development and how law enforcement agencies and tax authorities can cooperate to counter the misuse of beneficial ownership and client/attorney privileges to counter evasion and money laundering.

This project aims to support the efforts of the Ivorian Government and specialised agencies by encouraging and providing support to Small and Medium Enterprises (SMEs) in the implementation of good corporate governance measures.

The first objective of this project is to raise awareness about the importance and benefits of implementing good corporate governance measures. Examples of good practices and ways to implement these practices will be presented to participating SMEs through a year-long training scheme and the dissemination of a monthly newsletter.

CoST – the Infrastructure Transparency Initiative is the leading global initiative improving transparency and accountability in public infrastructure.

CoST works with government, industry and civil society to promote the disclosure of infrastructure project data. It validates and makes this data easy to understand through an assurance process and ensures this information reaches citizens. This helps to empower citizens to demand better infrastructure and hold decision makers to account.

Since 2014, the Turkish Integrity Center of Excellence (TICE) has been working on elevating the awareness on the corruption effects and developing tools to combat it in the private sector while also setting an example for public sector with its content development and capacity building activities. With this project, TICE aims now to take its efforts to the next level and elevate the integrity risk management abilities of local companies to match the high “extended enterprise integrity risk management” standards of multinational companies.

The Banknote Ethics Initiative (BnEI) is an initiative established to provide ethical business practice, with a focus on the prevention of corruption and on compliance with anti-trust law within the banknote industry. Working together, and through BnEI, the industry can help ensure that all the companies operating in the industry are performing to the highest ethical standards.

Does your company do business in emerging markets? Wouldn’t it be helpful if you could really rely on the certification of a local business partner in those markets?

If you know you can trust the certifier and the certification process, due diligence will be quicker and easier - at least in theory.

The Basel Institute's International Centre for Collective Action is launching an innovative project to explore certification and its role in anti-corruption due diligence.

What role can compliance certification play in anti-corruption Collective Action?

The discussion around the ISO 37001 standard, published late 2016, created something of a debate on the pros and cons of certifying companies’ compliance programs. And while many welcomed the introduction of a uniform international standard for the prevention and detection of bribes other familiar criticisms of certification remain.