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CDB president: Implement more measures to fight corruption


CDB president: Implement more measures to fight corruption
Dr Hyginus ‘Gene’ Leon. (GP)

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Caribbean Development Bank (CDB) president Dr Gene Leon is urging Barbados and other regional countries to intensify their efforts to reduce corruption.

This was necessary for the Caribbean to reduce poverty and increase economic growth, the economist said today as the CDB opened its two-day Caribbean Conference on Corruption, Compliance and Cybercrime 2021.

Leon said more effective governance was “particularly crucial at this very moment when the region is addressing multiple challenges in health, education, social welfare and economic development”. It was also important in the context of increased cybercrime risks, he added.

“The region’s current economic and social challenges should be more than enough incentive for us to take the appropriate action. Instituting suitable systems for accountability and compliance are necessary for building investor confidence and attracting investment for the achievement of sustainable development,” he said.

Leon said the Barbados-based CDB viewed development “as a holistic process with strong governance systems as an integral element of the region’s economic and financial ecosystem”.

“Governments and organisations can all support this objective of making governance the pedestal of credibility by fostering adherence to the rule of law, establishing and maintaining effective legal and regulatory frameworks and by pursuing anti-corruption policies that promote trust and build integrity,” he said.

Leon mentioned bribery as one of the corruptive practices that could harm countries like Barbados. He said the International Monetary Fund estimated that bribery alone costs between US$1.2 trillion and US$2 trillion a year. This was equivalent to a loss of about two per cent of global GDP.

Regarding cybercrime, he said global researcher and publisher Cybersecurity Ventures estimated that global losses from cybercrimes could top US$6 trillion in 2021 compared with US$1 trillion in 2020. (SC)

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