G20 LEADERS WILL HELP ENTREPRENEURS TO FIGHT AGAINST CORRUPTION

4th September 2013

On September 5-6 the Constantine Palace in St. Petersburg will held G20 Summit. During the Summit, the Heads of States will be presented with the "White Book" of "Business Twenties" - B20, which contains recommendations of the business community on how to provide a new type of economic growth.

The recommendations are gathered under the auspices of RSPP (the Russian Union of Manufacturers and Entrepreneurs), the Chairman of the B20 this year. They cover a wide range of issues related to the development of corporations’ business activity, transparency and anti-corruption, implementation of innovation and creation new job positions.

Since the fight against corruption is the most important issue for business, the members of the B20 Target Group «Transparency and anti-corruption", chaired by Andrei Bugrov, Vice-President of "Interros", decided to consolidate the provisions of the "White Book" and sent a letter to the Heads of the "Twenty" States. Together with Bugrov, this document was signed by Michal Shamolin, President of AFK "Sistema", Steve Almond, Chairman of Deloitte, Giuseppe Recchi, Chairman of the Board of Directors of ENI, Nani Falco-Beccalli, President and CEO of General Electric Europe, Michael Andrew, Chairman of KPMG, Joe Kaiser, President and CEO of Siemens and other representatives of the business world and non-governmental organizations.

The authors of the letter offer the business community and the Governments of G20 countries to move, after all, "from declarations to actions". Once again they list the key points of their recommendations, as soon as practice shows that the problem of corruption needs coordinated action of business organizations and governments of the largest world economies.

"Fighting of business against corruption is not just a question of ethics or social responsibility. We know, and in some cases from our own experience, that the corrupt activities of only one dishonest employee can destroy corporate reputation and cause huge financial losses. From the point of view of the Management and shareholders, corruption and its consequences literally suck the resources of the company. Corruption, especially in some of our key markets, makes the business to reduce investment activity. Simply said, corruption has a fatal effect on the development of both business and society", written in the letter.

The group, chaired by Andrew Bugrov, proposes to create a system for the information exchange between businesses and governments – at the national level and at the level of the "Group of Twenty". For this purpose Collective Action Hub is proposed to be organized - a virtual platform where small and medium-sized businesses, state-owned companies and government agencies will be able to share best practices to fight against corruption. In addition, it is proposed to create a level playing field for investing activities, to encourage businesses to conduct their own audit, to make public tenders transparent and to improve compliance standards in supplier companies.

The authors of the letter hope that the Collective Action Hub will start operating until the end of 2013, at the time of transfer of the G20 presidency from Russia to Australia, and the Leader will be the Basel Institute on Governance with the participation of the UN Global Compact. Entrepreneurs agreed to fund the platform.

To receive good results, businesses and governments of every G20 country need to implement new approaches to fight against corruption, thus it is proposed to organize or support existing Anti-corruption Centers of Excellence in the G20 states. These centers can become an independent platform for the discussion of Collective Action initiatives, informing the business community on best practices in this field and provision of training in the latest measures to fight against corruption.

"We understand that each state will move forward at its own tempo, but we hope that the national business and political leaders of the "Twenty" will cooperate with us and help in achieving the objectives. The coming months will determine either our recommendations remain at the level of declarations, or we, the leaders of the largest companies of the G20 countries and you, the heads of our governments, have the will and determination to fundamentally change behavior in our countries and in our markets", says Andrei Bugrov, Leader of the Group, in the letter.

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