Participants of the Business Integrity Youth Workshop in Salelologa with Chamber of Commerce & UNDP representatives at the Jetover Hotel where the training was held

 

(Savai’i, Samoa) 28 September 2021 – Samoan young entrepreneurs are meeting in Savai’i today to explore the role they can play in strengthening ethics, internal business control mechanisms and compliance in their local businesses.

Supported by the United Nations Pacific Regional Anti-Corruption (UN-PRAC) Project, the workshop is part of a series of integrity-strengthening efforts led by the Samoa Chamber of Commerce & Industry (SCCI) and the UN Development Programme (UNDP) Samoa Multi-Country Office (MCO). The UN-PRAC Project is a joint initiative by the United Nations Office on Drugs and Crime (UNODC) and the UNDP Pacific Office in Fiji.

Today’s Salelologa, Savai’i workshop is the first of three workshops for Samoan young entrepreneurs and young people intending to start their own businesses. Further workshops are scheduled for 29 September in Asau, Savai’i and 8 October in Apia, Upolu.

“Corruption can have a devastating impact on local businesses, arguably now more than ever during COVID-19, and this training offers advice on how to protect your business from corrupt practices that young people and other Samoan entrepreneurs identified they were confronting,” said Christina Mualia, Assistant Resident Representative – Governance, UNDP Samoa MCO.

“Corruption hinders entrepreneurship and innovation in society. In this training, we are opening an important dialogue with existing and potential young entrepreneurs in Samoa on how they can do business with integrity. Opting for clear values and strong ethics can only raise the impact of their businesses in the market and bring more investors,” said regional UNDP Anti-Corruption Adviser, Sonja Stefanovska-Trajanoska.  

“This youth entrepreneurs workshop offers practical guidance on what constitutes corruption in Samoa, what laws and institutions are used to prevent and fight corruption, and who you can ask for help, in line with international best practices found in the United Nations Convention against Corruption, and Sustainable Development Goal 16,” said regional UNODC Anti-Corruption Adviser, Marie Pegie Cauchois. 

SCCI, UNDP Samoa MCO and UN-PRAC have already worked together to produce a Business Integrity Toolkit for Young Entrepreneurs, which was developed after consultations with local youth entrepreneurs on how to safeguard their businesses and not fall prey to corruption risks.

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Training facilitator, Petronilla Molioo (left) with participants during a break in training
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Budding entrepreneurs - Letufa Tofilau, Toetu Afualo and Wongsoon Molia. Their business ventures include vegetable gardens, farms and timber
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Youth entrepreneur, Liahona Leauanae - who runs a catering & bakery business, UNDP Assistant Resident Representative - Governance, Christina Mualia, and Francis Taito, who runs a koko farm & keke puaa business

“Young entrepreneurs already contribute positively to the community, but they can play a key role in tackling corruption and building business integrity as the country strengthens its economy and tackles COVID-19. SCCI is delighted to be collaborating with UN-PRAC and the UNDP Samoa MCO to create awareness on early detection and prevention of toxic conditions like corruption,” said Lemauga Hobart Vaai, Chief Executive Officer, Samoa Chamber of Commerce & Industry.

UN-PRAC has also undertaken integrity strengthening with young entrepreneurs in Fiji, Solomon Islands and Palau. Similar trainings will also be carried out in Niue.

The UN-PRAC Project is a joint initiative by the United Nations Office on Drugs and Crime (UNODC) and the United Nations Development Programme (UNDP), supported by the New Zealand Government.  The Samoa MCO works closely with the governments of Cook Islands, Niue, Samoa and Tokelau as well as Non-Government Organizations on development programmes in the areas of Democratic Governance, Sustainable Livelihoods/Poverty Reduction, Crisis Prevention & Recovery, Environment and Energy and Gender Mainstreaming.

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About UNODC

UNODC works to counter drugs, crime, terrorism and corruption. It mobilizes and promotes regional and transnational cooperation to confront these threats. Specific efforts are made to target the world’s most vulnerable regions, where the convergence of these issues threatens regional and global security. UNODC works directly with Governments, international organizations, and civil society in undertaking three key actions: field-based technical cooperation projects to enhance the capacity of its Member States; research and analytical work to increase knowledge and understanding of drugs and crime issues; and normative work to assist Member States in the ratification and implementation of the relevant international treaties and the development of domestic legislation on drugs, crime, terrorism and corruption. More at www.unodc.org or follow at @UNODC.

 

About UNDP

UNDP is the leading United Nations organization fighting to end the injustice of poverty, inequality, and climate change. Working with our broad network of experts and partners in 170 countries, we help nations to build integrated, lasting solutions for people and planet. Learn more at www.pacific.undp.org or follow at @UNDP_Pacific.

For more information, or media interviews please contact:

Laufaleaina Lesa, Communications Analyst – UNDP Multi Country Office, Samoa | Tel. +685 23670 | E: laufaleaina.lesa@undp.org | www.ws.undp.org

Emily Moli, Knowledge Communications Analyst – UNDP Pacific Office in Fiji | E: emily.moli@undp.org | M: (679) 722 5301.

Akara Umapornsakula, Communications Assistant – United Nations Office on Drugs and Crime Regional Office for Southeast Asia and the Pacific | E: akara.umapornsakula@un.org | P: (66) 22 88 1906

 

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