MANILA, PHILIPPINES: The Asian Development Bank (ADB) today marked the 9th International Anticorruption Day with a commitment to strengthen engagement with the private sector to support good corporate governance and anticorruption measures.
In his welcome remarks, ADB President Mr. Takehiko Nakao said: “When good public governance is matched by good corporate governance, the impact of development is magnified,” adding that public and private sectors must work together to build effective, accountable, and inclusive institutions.
Board of Trustees Chair of ASEAN CSR Network Ms. Yanti Triwadiantini and Project Director of Thai Private Sector Collective Action against Corruption (CAC) Mr. Pana Ratanabanangkoon delivered keynote speeches at the event.
Ms. Triwadiantini said that creating a culture of integrity in the business community in Southeast Asian nations is a crucial step toward shared growth and progress. She emphasized that by choosing to embrace integrity as a corporate value, the business community can help foster a more sustainable, inclusive, and fair playing field.
Mr. Ratanabanangkoon highlighted the key role of collective action in fighting corruption, citing how eight leading organizations in the Thai private sector worked together in 2010 to build a clean and transparent business community through CAC. To date, 427 Thai companies have been certified by CAC as compliant with anticorruption standards derived from Transparency International guidelines, while 953 more companies have applied to join.
With the global cost of corruption estimated at $2.6 trillion per year, equivalent to 5% of global gross domestic product, the world is deprived of resources that could help fund commitments under the 2030 Sustainable Development Goals. ADB recognizes the need to address the unfinished governance agenda to deliver development results.
As ADB looks to increase its private sector operations to one-third of total operations by 2024 with more focus on new markets, including fragile and conflict-affected states and small island developing countries, it will work to further improve corporate governance and compliance with global standards on integrity and transparency among its private sector partners.
Mr. Nakao highlighted key areas in which ADB is promoting integrity in the private sector. One of these measures is a new regional technical assistance—the Corporate Governance Development Framework (CGDF)—which will enhance corporate governance through assessments and the development of action plans by providing training and capacity building to directors of companies in which ADB has equity investments. ADB is also strengthening its due diligence on integrity risks for companies receiving ADB loans and equity investments. This year, ADB has evaluated more than 700 entities.
ADB is committed to achieving a prosperous, inclusive, resilient, and sustainable Asia and the Pacific, while sustaining its efforts to eradicate extreme poverty. In 2018, it made commitments of new loans and grants amounting to $21.6 billion. Established in 1966, it is owned by 68 members—49 from the region.