Ladies and gentlemen,
Welcome and thank you for joining this GlobE Network event on how we can strengthen cross-border law enforcement cooperation to spark a step change in the fight against corruption.
Six months ago, I had the privilege to launch the GlobE Network with our partners at Nazaha, on the margins of the first-ever General Assembly special session against corruption.
By connecting anti-corruption law enforcement authorities across the world, the GlobE Network assists them in communicating directly and sharing information swiftly, to bring the corrupt to justice, and identify, recover and return stolen assets.
Since its official launch in June, the Network has grown even faster than expected, demonstrating that GlobE is meeting Member States’ requirements and addressing a need in current anti-corruption responses.
GlobE membership now stands at 80 different anti-corruption authorities hailing from 48 countries. We are well on our way towards the long-term goal of universal membership by UN Member States and States Parties to the Convention.
Just last month this young Network reached another critical milestone: the first meeting of members of the GlobE Network took place in Vienna.
The Network members wasted no time in setting priorities, agreeing a Network Charter and establishing a governance structure. Crucially, a Steering Committee was also selected to ensure that the Network is owned by its members, and that its activities directly reflect on-the-ground realities and requirements.
I would like to thank Spain and the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia for accepting the Chair and Vice-Chair responsibilities respectively.
My appreciation also goes to the additional 13 members of the Steering Committee, who bring with them expertise and experience from across the world.
Ladies and gentlemen,
I commend the GlobE Network members on this remarkable progress, and I encourage you to keep up the momentum.
The real work lies ahead as we look towards delivering on one of the key promises of the UN Convention against Corruption, namely to improve global cooperation.
The threats posed by corruption, bribery, and illicit financial flows have only become more acute in the COVID-19 crisis. As life moves increasingly online, new skills and new partnerships are needed to counter cryptocurrency money laundering and other new challenges.
We need to cooperate internationally to combat COVID-19, and we need to cooperate internationally to combat corruption. The GlobE Network provides an important platform for action.
Here, at the CoSP, the world’s largest anti-corruption gathering, GlobE Network members have an excellent opportunity to forge connections, build trust, and make operational and practical the international cooperation that the UN Convention against Corruption and other global frameworks seek to foster.
I welcome today’s discussion and distinguished panellists. Your discussion on the challenges faced in international anti-corruption law enforcement cooperation, as well as on the role that practitioners’ networks such as the GlobE Network can play in overcoming those challenges, represents an important contribution to the 9th session of the CoSP.
This week is also an opportunity to further strengthen political resolve to support and advance the Network.
The Kingdom of Saudi Arabia has tabled a draft resolution on enhancing international anti-corruption cooperation through GlobE. States Parties’ engagement and support are a demonstration of their commitment to utilize the Network as a tool to bolster asset recovery and fight corruption.
Looking ahead, our aim is to build a truly global network of anti-corruption practitioners, who will use the tools and platform provided by GlobE to strengthen the personal, cross-border cooperation needed to facilitate the formal cooperation and mutual legal assistance process.
It is only through the creation of a community of practitioners whose information sharing is proactive and rapid that we can dismantle the systems that enable the corrupt to steal with impunity.
The lessons learned in the fight against corruption that will be gathered by the GlobE Network also represent an important resource, and future CoSPs will be able to draw on the experiences of GlobE member authorities to inform its policy discussions.
In closing, allow me to once again thank all the Member States whose anti-corruption law enforcement authorities have joined the GlobE Network. Your participation marks a determined contribution to our worldwide efforts to ramp up and accelerate the fight against corruption – and we look forward to other Member States joining us very soon.