The UN Convention against Corruption, the only universal convention on combating corruption, offers Switzerland the opportunity to promote equal treatment for international Swiss companies.
UN Convention against Corruption
Switzerland promotes worldwide efforts to fight corrupt practices. It ratified the United Nations Convention against Corruption (UNCAC) on 24 September 2009. The Convention is a comprehensive global agreement on fighting corruption, with more than 170 states parties.
The states parties are bound by the Convention to take measures in the areas of:
- preventing corruption
- criminalisation and law enforcement
- international cooperation
- asset recovery
- technical assistance to developing countries and countries with economies in transition
The implementation of the provisions of the Convention by the individual member states is evaluated in a review mechanism created in 2009 (peer review mechanism). It foresees five-year cycles focusing on different theme-specific chapters in the Convention. The country review is always carried out by two other states parties.
The review is based primarily on self-assessments and bilateral exchanges, ideally in the form of visits to the country under review. The resulting draft country report is revised with the country under review and is confidential. A summary of the final country report – not the entire country report – is subsequently published.
An Implementation Review Group was established to serve as a forum for the exchange of experiences to guide and improve the country reviews.
Country review of Switzerland
Algeria and Finland reviewed Switzerland in 2012 on its implementation of the Convention in the areas of criminalisation and law enforcement (Chapter III) and international cooperation (Chapter IV). The second review cycle is expected to last from 2016–2020. It focuses on the implementation of the provisions on preventing corruption (Chapter II) and the restitution of assets (Chapter V).
Switzerland voluntarily published all of the relevant documentation of its first country review, i.e. self-assessment report, country report and executive summary. It will maintain its commitment to transparency in future.