On 10 and 11 March 2021, TrustAfrica in partnership with the Thomson Reuters Foundation convened 110+ media and civil society practitioners from xxx to discuss and debate the issue of illicit financial flows (IFF) from Africa in the Covid-19 era.
The virtual convening focused on the theme: ”Strengthening the collaboration between the media and civil society in the fight against illicit financial flows (IFFs) from Africa in the Covid-19 era.” The convening was part of the 2021 edition of the Media-Civil Society Meeting on Illicit Financial Flows in Africa.
The meeting aimed to ‘create a space for African journalists covering IFFs to engage with civil society organisations and other relevant stakeholders’.
The goal was to develop strategies on how media reporting on IFFs can best translate into an effective resource for advocacy efforts and constant pressure for policy change, particularly in the Covid-19 era.
To address this issue, participants discussed the following themes:
- Understanding illicit financial flows: Definition, Sources, Magnitude of the Problem and Facilitators;
- Follow progress, challenges and opportunities! The state of place on the fight against IFFs from Africa;
- New frontiers in the digital age, new media and the fight against IFFs from Africa: Challenges and opportunities (the taxation of the digital economy’.
- Providing information on illicit financial flows: Experiences on the ground;
- Strengthening collaboration between the media, researchers and advocacy organizations in the fight against IFFs from Africa in the digital age” were also on the agenda.
As a reminder, the High-Level Expert Group (HLP) on Illicit Financial Flows from Africa estimates that a minimum of $50 billion is lost each year from the continent due to IFF.
According to TrustAfrica and Thomson Reuters, “these illicit flows deprive African countries of vital tax revenues that could be spent on social programs such as health care, education and basic infrastructure, and bleed countries with funds that might otherwise be invested in projects to create jobs and boost development.”
The success of the two-day conference received wide coverage in the following media outlets: