Following the participation of the European Investment Bank (EIB), represented by the Inspector General, Jan Willem van der Kaaij, in the 2018 International Anti-Corruption Conference, which took place in Copenhagen, Denmark in October 2018, the EIB has since adopted and published an Anti-Corruption Statement.
The conference in Copenhagen brought together around 40 ministers, leaders of international organisations and private companies. On this occasion, participants came together to discuss strategies for international collaboration in the fight against corruption, re-acknowledging in a joint statement published by the high-level segment of the Conference that corruption must be prevented, investigated and sanctioned, while highlighting the important role international cooperation plays in achieving these goals.
The harmonization and exchange of best practices at an international level are important and effective responses to the global fight against fraud and corruption. The Bank’s adherence to the joint statement is in line with EIB’s participation to international awareness raising on such important issues. It further demonstrates that the Bank, in seeking to align its policies to international practices and standards, is cognisant of the principles embedded in the joint statement.
The specific Bank’s statement reaffirms anew EIB’s belief that corruption undermines economic development, is a critical issue in many countries, and provides a hurdle to them in fulfilling their economic potential. It reasserts EIB’s commitment to integrity and accountability, and its zero tolerance towards Prohibited Conduct.
The EIB statement further focuses on the relevance of international cooperation in addressing common challenges posed by the proceeds of corruption and the Bank’s cooperation with OLAF, national authorities and international organisations. It also highlights the proactive and innovative approach (such as the EIB’s Proactive Integrity Reviews) taken by EIB to detect corruption.
The EIB’s Anti-Fraud and Corruption Policy can be accessed here.
The Joint statement by the high-level segment of the 18th International Anti-Corruption Conference can be read in full on the IACC’s website.
Duncan Smith is Deputy Head of Fraud Investigations at EIB, responsible for a range of policy, training, outreach, prevention and deterrence issues. After being called to the Bar, he spent 10 years prosecuting at the UK’s DTI and Serious Fraud Office. He joined World Bank’s Investigation Unit as Team Leader then policy/debarment adviser, moving to EIB in 2007. He’s co-author of the IFI Task Force’s Uniform Framework Agreement (2006) that harmonized the definitions of fraud and corruption across the multilateral development banks.