Ladies and gentlemen,
It is a pleasure to join the President of INEGI and the Commissioner of KOSTAT virtually for this conference, supported by the UN Office on Drugs and Crime along with the Centres of Excellence and other longstanding partners.
The 5th International Conference on Governance, Crime and Justice Statistics offers a timely focus on topical challenges, including the impact of COVID on violence, crime and drugs; measuring corruption and illicit financial flows; gender perspectives in crime and drug statistics; big data and more.
The International Classification of Crime for Statistical Purposes, adopted in 2015, provides a comprehensive framework to improve data quality and expand our understanding of crime and its drivers.
UNODC is the proud custodian of the ICCS. More than 60 countries are in the process of implementing the framework, in many cases with support from our Office and the Centres of Excellence.
Designing and implementing effective policy to improve the quality and quantity of statistics on crime, corruption and justice requires building diverse capacities, a high level of coordination, and devoting the necessary resources.
The exchange of knowledge and experience through conferences such as this one can make a crucial contribution to developing national statistical systems.
Quality data and analysis represent an essential investment that can pay off by helping governments target available funds more efficiently, and tailor responses to real needs and problems.
UNODC support Member States in achieving these objectives, and our technical assistance has evolved over the years through the regional Centres of Excellence.
The UNODC-INEGI Centre of Excellence was established in Mexico City in 2011.
Over the past decade, we have developed the Latin American and Caribbean Crime Victimization Survey Initiative to measure victimization, perception of insecurity and the dark figure of crime; started a pilot for measuring illicit financial flows in four countries in Latin America; and trained over 2,500 officials in 49 countries.
I am proud to see that in 2021, the Centre has launched a global consultation towards a common statistical framework on gender-related killings of women and girls, together with UN Women and its Centre of Excellence on Gender Statistics.
A report on measuring cybercrime in the region will also be published soon.
The Mexico City Centre has been complemented by the UNODC-KOSTAT Centre of Excellence for Statistics on Crime and Criminal Justice in Asia and the Pacific.
Since its launch in 2019 with Statistics Korea, this regional innovation hub has provided training to over 500 partners, including on topics related to crime statistics and gender, crime victimization surveys, corruption surveys and Sustainable Development Goal indicators.
At the same time, UNODC is enhancing its overall support to Member States to improve crime metrics, including with a manual on corruption surveys, and new work to build a comprehensive framework to measure corruption.
Over the past decade, our Research and Analysis Branch has created the largest existing dataset on trafficking in persons, with information on more than 350,000 victims detected in more than 140 countries.
We are also working with ILO, IOM and academia to establish and implement standards to measure trafficking for forced labour in South East Asia, the Pacific Islands and South America.
In the field of wildlife crime, UNODC has gathered and analysed information on some 200,000 seizures from 149 countries, and measured illicit financial flows from this crime.
We are further expanding our work to develop comparable data on crime and violence driven by street gangs and non-state armed groups, and to improve the foundations for data in new research areas such as cybercrime. We look forward to sharing these findings with you.
In closing I would like to thank our partners at INEGI and KOSTAT once again, and to commend the Centres of Excellence for their solid efforts.
Together, we have come a long way in developing crime and criminal justice statistical systems around the world to produce quality data to focus, monitor and evaluate justice responses to crime, and to achieve the SDGs.
UNODC remains your trusted global partner in helping to build better evidence for crime and justice.
I look forward to hearing the results of this conference, and I wish you fruitful discussions.