France’s Anti-corruption Strategy - Integral to its Global Activities

published on 03 June 2021
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France's anti-corruption strategy - part of its global action
The United Nations General Assembly is meeting in a special session on corruption, on June 2 to 4, 2021, in New York. During the session, the French Ministry for Europe and Foreign Affairs presented France’s anti-corruption strategy, as part of its cooperation activities. AFD, alongside Expertise France, helped draft this strategy document, which is fully in line with the Group’s commitments to prevent and fight prohibited practices.
The following text is published jointly along with the French Ministry for Europe and Foreign Affairs.

The following text is published jointly along with the French Ministry for Europe and Foreign Affairs.

Corruption is a global phenomenon that affects all regions, all sectors, and all stakeholders. The yearly amount of bribes and misappropriations is difficult to determine in monetary terms, but estimates by the World Bank and the World Economic Forum suggest it reaches $3.6 trillion, or 5% of the world’s gross domestic product (GDP).

Corruption is a major obstacle to development. Its many negative effects on economic activity and state legitimacy include discouraging investors, misuse of funds,  the theft and misappropriation of natural resources, and reduced state income. It distorts competition, boosts the informal economy, and lowers tax compliance.

Corruption also prevents funds from being allocated optimally and diminishes the effectiveness of public policies. By creating obstacles to fair and efficient distribution of goods and services, it impairs the State’s ability to provide quality public services. As a result, corruption leads to growth in inequality and a decline in confidence in State institutions and representatives.

From Organized Crime to Terrorism

This confidence is also compromised when corruption affects the electoral process and consequently reduces the legitimacy of democratic systems. In general, corruption undermines rule of law and is an obstacle to human rights.

Corruption and misappropriated funds contributes to the proliferation of organized crime networks, armed groups and even terrorism. As a result, exacerbates crisis and fragility, and undermines security and stability nationally, regionally, and internationally.

This is why France has made the fight against corruption a core aspect of its international action and has devised a strategy to fight it.

This strategy will support France in its work toward achieving the Sustainable Development Goals, in particular Goal 16 on building effective, accountable, and inclusive institutions at all levels. The strategy document was drafted by all the French institutions concerned and will help guide cooperation actions in the coming years.

The strategy proposes a series of concrete actions and a precise timetable, including:

  • Risk-reduction actions, in particular those to increase training for public officials
  • Support for institutions, the police, and the justice system 
  • Close collaboration with civil society, thereby reaffirming France’s determination to place citizens at the heart of its cooperation activities

To find out more: France’s anti-corruption strategy in its global actions (2021-2030)