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The first meeting of the G20 Anti-corruption Working Group (ACWG) that was inaugurated on March 1st by Union Minister of State for Personnel & PMO, Dr Jitendra Singh, concluded on 3rd March in Gurugram. Shri Rahul Singh, Additional Secretary, DoPT & Chair, G20 ACWG, along with Mr. Giovanni Tartaglia Polcini, Head of Task Force, Co-chair, G20 ACWG, Italy, addressed the media at the end of the ACWG meeting.
Shri Rahul Singh informed that over the past three days, there have been intensive and productive deliberations on several key focal areas pertaining to Asset Recovery, Fugitive Economic Offenders, formal and informal channels of cooperation for information sharing, institutional frameworks for combating corruption and mutual legal assistance, among others. This included presentations and interventions of country delegates and experts from UNODC, OECD, Egmont Group, INTERPOL and IMF. The ACWG meeting was enriched by keynote addresses by dignitaries including Shri Girish Chandra Murmu, the Comptroller and Auditor General of India, Shri Praveen Kumar Srivastava, Central Vigilance Commissioner of India, Shri Nitin Gupta, Chairman, Central Board of Direct Taxes, Shri Sanjay Kumar Mishra, Director Enforcement Directorate and Shri Subodh Kumar Jaiswal, Director, Central Bureau of Investigation.
Shri Rahul Singh further stated that it has been the endeavor of the delegates during the deliberations to arrive at a consensus on the draft text of the High-Level Principles that are on the agenda for the ACWG during the India’s G20 Presidency. He informed that considerable progress has been made in discussing the High-Level Principles on Improving Information sharing for fighting Corruption and related economic crimes, Strengthening Asset Recovery Mechanisms related to Corruption and related economic Crimes, Strengthening Law Enforcement Cooperation for Action against Corruption and related economic crime, and Promoting Integrity and effectiveness of Public Bodies responsible for Preventing and Combating Corruption.
He further stated that on the first day of the ACWG, a Side Event was held on Leveraging ICT to curb corruption in public sector, an area in which India’s recent initiatives like the GEM Portal and DBT have been globally recognized. During this event, leading experts from India showcased how India has adapted the power of ICT to curb corruption in public service delivery.
Shri Rahul Singh highlighted that every effort is being taken to give the delegates a flavor of India’s rich culture, heritage and cuisine during their stay with us here at Gurugram. India looks forward eagerly to hosting the delegates again at Rishikesh from 25th to 27th May for the second ACWG meeting and Kolkata from 9th to 11th August for the third ACWG meeting. India will also host the first ever in-person Anti-Corruption Ministerial Meeting to provide further impetus to Enhancing Asset Recovery and International Cooperation for Strengthening the Fight against Corruption and related Economic Crimes, he said.
Addressing the media, Mr. Giovanni Tartaglia Polcini re-affirmed Italy’s staunch support for India’s agenda at the G20 ACWG. He appreciated India’s efforts for organizing the first G20 ACWG at Gurugram. While talking about the changing nature of corruption, he stated that there is a need to engage with civil society and the business community, as part of a multi-stake holder approach that is required to effectively fight against corruption.
Over 90 delegates participating from 20 member countries, 10 Invitee countries and 9 International Organizations attended the first meeting of the G20 ACWG, which is truly representative of the richness of international experience in anti-corruption initiatives. India placed on record sincere appreciation and gratitude for the presence of Italy as the co-chair of the G20 ACWG.
March 4th, 2023