Afghanistan to be included in defence sector integrity-building initiative
On 2 November 2010, lead nations Norway, Poland, Switzerland and the United Kingdom signed the financial and executing agreements for the second phase of the Building Integrity (BI) Initiative. The programme, which aims to help Allied and Partner nations reduce corruption risks in the defence sector, will soon include a programme tailored for Afghanistan.
Phase II of the BI Initiative will focus on enhancing an existing tool kit with:
- a strengthened programme of activities for the Afghan National Security Forces, as part of the Afghan Cooperation Programme;
- participation in the pre-deployment training for the International Security Assistance Force (ISAF) delivered by Joint Force Command (JFC), Brunssum; and
- the inclusion of corruption-related issues in pre-deployment training and in-theatre assistance for ISAF procurement officers in order to reduce the risk of corruption in contracting and to support NATO’s Afghan First Policy.
The tool kit already includes BI courses, the BI Compendium of Best Practice and the Integrity Self Assessment Survey used by nations to map their current practices and procedures. Bosnia-Herzegovina, Bulgaria, Croatia, Norway and Ukraine have completed the survey.
More than 300 civil and military personnel have attended the NATO BI Leadership Course. Developed and conducted in collaboration with Transparency International (Defence Team, UK), it is the first NATO course with strong NGO involvement.
The BI Initiative was launched by NATO’s Euro-Atlantic Partnership Council (EAPC) in 2007. It aims to help nations confronted with the long-term affordability and sustainability of defence expenditures to make the most of limited funds and address the negative impact of corruption on NATO-led operations.
The 50-nation EAPC is a multilateral forum for dialogue and consultation on political and security-related issues among Allies and Partner countries. It provides the overall political framework for NATO’s cooperation with Partner countries in the Euro-Atlantic area, and for the bilateral relationships developed between NATO and individual Partner countries under the Partnership for Peace programme.