1NGG meetingAmman, 14 July 2017 – The Non-Governmental Group of the Arab Anti-Corruption and Integrity Network (ACINET) held a regional workshop in Amman on 12-13 July 2017 with the support of the UNDP Regional Project on Anti-Corruption and Integrity in Arab Countries (ACIAC) and in cooperation with the Jordan Transparency Center. It was attended by representatives of 18 of the 23 members of the Group, including civil society organizations, business associations and universities.

Participants deepened their knowledge on the requirements for reviewing and supporting the implementation of the UN Convention Against Corruption (UNCAC) and identified a number of follow up activities to enhance the inclusiveness and effectiveness of related efforts in the region. A key initiative in this regard is the work to develop indicators that enable monitoring de facto compliance with key UNCAC provisions such as integrity in procurement, the effectiveness of financial disclosures and the independence of supreme audit institutions and anti-corruption agencies. Azmi Shuaibi from Arab Parliamentarians against Corruption (ArPAC) stressed the importance of this initiative: “this work is cutting-edge not only in the region but also worldwide … it will help us articulate stronger positions and more specific reform recommendations”.

In parallel, participants also received training on how to promote collective action against corruption, and were prepared to carry out related activities in their respective countries with focus on key sectors for development, starting with the health and customs sectors, and in cooperation with national anti-corruption authorities, whenever possible. Commenting on the potential role that ACINET’s Non-Governmental Group can play in this regard, Majdi Hassan from the Arab Institute for Business Leaders (IACE) stated: “engaging businesses in collective action against corruption is a challenge, they need platforms that help them to feel more secure and enable them to have better access to market incentives”.

The various sessions also allowed participants to share updates on recent achievements and emerging challenges in their countries and to exchange views on how to address related issues, highlighting among other things the importance of expanding their engagement with universities and the youth in the region, and increasing their support to non-governmental actors who are working to promote peace and good governance in conflict-affected areas in Arab countries.