IIU Commemorates the 20th Anniversary of International Anti-Corruption Day

  • Article type Press release
  • Publication date 09 Dec 2023

In commemoration of the 20th anniversary of International Anti-Corruption Day, GCF Independent Integrity Unit Head Karen Ernst provides remarks to all GCF external stakeholders.


Video Transcript:

Dear GCF partners and stakeholders worldwide, greetings from Songdo, South Korea. My name is Karen Ernst and I am the Head of the GCF Independent Integrity Unit, also known as the IIU.

We are one of the accountability mechanisms of the GCF, responsible for promoting good governance and preventing misuse of the Fund’s resources. 

I am speaking to you on the occasion of International Anti-Corruption Day, which is a UN day that is commemorated each year on December 9. This day represents the anniversary of the adoption of a landmark agreement called the United Nations Convention against Corruption. 

This year is the 20th anniversary of International Anti-Corruption Day, and integrity organisations globally are coming together under the theme of “Uniting the World Against Corruption.” 

GCF is the world’s largest multilateral climate fund, driving transformative climate action in 129 developing countries around the world. The GCF has committed $13.5 billion in concessional finance to implement these projects. 

As the climate emergency worsens, there is increased urgency around the world to speed up these investments. While it is critical that we deliver the funds needed to developing countries to achieve Paris Agreement goals, it is also important to recognise that GCF projects are complex. And with increased complexity, projects become more prone to risk. 

We must be vigilant in the delivery and implementation of these funds, so that the promised climate action goes to communities that need it most. 

Over the years, the Independent Integrity Unit has been working to develop a suite of policies to guide the conduct of our external partners and provide guidance on mitigating integrity violations. The GCF Integrity Policy Framework outlines the scope of these efforts, and I would encourage all of you to visit our website to explore these in more depth. 

Beyond the policies, we also have a number of important functions to advance integrity practices. These include investigating allegations of misconduct and prohibited practices within the Fund and our implementing entities, proactively assessing and mitigating integrity risks, and promoting awareness of GCF integrity standards to all our stakeholders. 

However, we cannot do this work alone. Uniting the world against corruption highlights the global nature of these efforts. Within the IIU, we already work closely with our external stakeholders, including our Direct Access Entities, Civil Society Organisations, and peer integrity institutions to grow the reach of our outreach efforts. 

Earlier this year, for example, IIU held its second Integrity Forum, which brought together 54 integrity professionals from 36 Direct Access Entities, as well as resource speakers from our partner organisations, for three days of knowledge sharing, peer learning, and networking. 

We plan on expanding our capacity building efforts in 2024. The IIU is currently developing an e-learning module that will provide the foundation on GCF’s integrity policies for our stakeholders. We will also continue developing knowledge products and providing trainings to further our collective integrity capacity. 

Growing these partnerships will help to pave the way for more effective, successful climate action in the future. 

I would encourage you all to visit our website at iiu.greenclimate.fund to learn more about GCF’s integrity policies and how to report an integrity violation. 

I look forward to uniting for a brighter future where integrity is at the core of climate action. Thank you very much.