Corruption and Illicit Trade
One of the key underlying conditions that makes countries more vulnerable to illicit trade is corruption, which erodes controls designed to prohibit illegal goods to move across borders, undermines law enforcement operations to detect or interrupt illicit trade, and contributes to impunity of illicit traders.
A new report from the Transnational Alliance to Combat Illicit Trade (TRACIT) - Money Talks: The Crooked Connection Between Corruption and Illicit Trade - finds that corruption is affecting illicit trade worldwide. There is not a single sector of illicit trade that is not tainted by corruption, including agrifoods, alcohol, IUU fishing, forced labor, timber, or wildlife, pharmaceuticals, pesticides, precious metals, gemstones, tobacco products, petroleum, or counterfeiting.
Examples of when corruption is encountered during illicit trading include when:
The report finds that any successful steps to mitigate illicit trade will necessarily require strong and targeted measures to mitigate corruption and prevent corrupt actors from compromising the integrity of the global supply chain.
Based on the findings of the report, TRACIT has formulated a set of policy recommendations aimed at facilitating an effective response to corruption in the context of illicit trade. These recommendations provide a “checklist” of fundamental measures that governments are encouraged to implement to improve their ability to defend against the wider societal harms of illicit trade, with a particular emphasis on addressing the enabling role of corruption in perpetuating illicit supply chains.
Launch event | Money Talks: The Crooked Connection Between Corruption and Illicit Trade
The report "Money Talks: The Crooked Connection Between Corruption and Illicit Trade" was launched at virtual panel discussion on 22 February 2024.
Dr. Ulrika Bonnier, TRACIT Director of Programs and principal author of the report, presented the key findings.
The webinar addressed the interrelationship between illicit trade and corruption and explored solutions available to prioritize and intensify an anti-illicit trade agenda at the national level.