The Global Compact, in partnership with the French Ministry of Economy,
Finances and Industry, convenes an international policy dialogue in Paris on
26-27 January 2004 on the topic of “Transparency and the Fight Against
Corruption”. The meeting, which will take place at the Ministry, will
include nearly 150 participants and leading experts representing business,
government, civil society, academia and the UN.
Also in Paris, at an event in the afternoon and evening of 27 January, President Jacques Chirac and Secretary-General Kofi Annan will preside over the introduction of the Global Compact Network France, which includes more than 230 leading French companies committed to advancing the Global Compact’s nine principles on human rights, labour and the environment. The Global Compact Network France will then convene a working-level meeting on 28 January to discuss strategies for promoting the Global Compact in France and other French-speaking countries around the world. The network will be chaired by Bertrand Collomb of Lafarge.
The policy dialogue on “Transparency and the Fight Against Corruption” will feature a plenary session with a keynote address by Francis Mer, French Minister of Economy, Finances and Industry. Following the plenary session, a panel and break-out sessions will explore how to support existing initiatives such as the Extractive Industry Transparency Initiative (EITI). This will be followed by in-depth discussions on the topic of corruption, including a discussion of the role of business with respect to the UN Convention Against Corruption.
During the policy dialogue segment on the topic of corruption, participants will discuss a proposal to add a principle against corruption to the framework of the Global Compact. This discussion is part of a comprehensive consultation process initiated by the Global Compact Office to seek the views of participants regarding the possible addition of a principle against corruption. The policy dialogue will be the first occasion at which participants discuss this possibility before the Global Compact Leaders Summit, scheduled for 24 June 2004.
The panel discussion on corruption will feature presentations from Peter Eigen, Transparency International; Francois Vincke, International Chamber of Commerce; Caspar Ridely, Royal Dutch/Shell Group; and Caroline King, SAP.
On the afternoon and evening of 27 January, an event will convene at the Elysée to introduce the Global Compact Network France. President Jacques Chirac and Secretary-General Kofi Annan will address the meeting, which will also feature Jérôme Monod, the counsellor of President Jacques Chirac, and several French business leaders. Numerous in-depth case studies on the Global Compact will be presented at the event.
The Global Compact Network France will work to broaden commitment to the Global Compact in France and in other French-speaking countries. The Network will establish a French-language website; translate key Global Compact materials into French; and convene meetings to raise awareness of the Compact and its principles. The Global Compact today operates more than 50 such country-level networks.
“French companies are among the most active participants in the Global Compact”, said Georg Kell, Executive Head of the Global Compact. “The Global Compact Network France will play an extremely important role in advancing learning, dialogue and projects in France and beyond”.