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26 September 2022, 12:00 - 13:30 Indochina Time / Bangkok | Open meeting

Stats Cafe 18/2022

The Asia-Pacific Stats Café Series on "Progress on Estimating Illicit Financial Flows – Lessons from the Asia-Pacific Region" was held on Monday, 26 September 2022, 12.00-13.30 hrs. Bangkok time (UTC+7).

This Stats Café session provided an update on the Illicit Financial Flows pilot in the Asia-Pacific region. The pilot project “Measuring Illicit Financial Flows in Asia-Pacific” was launched in July 2020, with project partners UNODC, UNCTAD and ESCAP, and is set to finish in December 2022. ESCAP serves as implementing partner for Measuring Illicit Financial Flows from tax and commercial activities and coordinated with pilot countries Kyrgyzstan and Uzbekistan.

The session included an overview of the pilot project and provided updates and preliminary results on the methods used to measure illicit financial flows in Kyrgyzstan and Uzbekistan. In both Kyrgyzstan and Uzbekistan, the methods applied are those in the “Methodological guidelines to measure tax and commercial illicit financial flows – Methods for pilot testing” published by the United Nations Conference on Trade and Development (UNCTAD). These methods are Partner Country Method (PCM), Price Filter Method (PFM), Profit shifting by Multinational Enterprises (MNEs) and (joint foreign flows of offshore financial capital by country.

In Kyrgyzstan, the pilot team tested an additional method of measuring illicit financial flows related to “grey re-exports.” “Grey exports” refer to either misreported re-exports or unreported re-exports. Testing these illicit financial flows was suggested by the national working group in Kyrgyzstan, based on the prevalence of grey re-exports in Kyrgyzstan. This method will be presented at the Stats Café session by the Kyrgyz national consultant.

The results of testing the methods will contribute towards possible improvements to the UNCTAD methodological guide for future work on measuring illicit financial flows. A plan is proposed to conduct similar projects to measure illicit financial flows in present pilot countries, and additional interested countries in future. The Stats Café session will also discuss progress in measuring Illicit financial flows in other pilots and plans for further work globally and relevant policy implications and decisions.

  1. Overview of “Measuring Illicit Financial Flows in Asia-Pacific” by ESCAP-Statistics Division (SD) The ESCAP-SD presentation will outline the experience of conducting pilot studies in Kyrgyzstan and Uzbekistan and estimating illicit financial flows in these countries. The presentation will discuss the occurrences of illicit tax and commercial activity in Kyrgyzstan and Uzbekistan, data available to measure the flows, the experience of assessing data and formulating the pilot testing plan and the challenges and considerations of testing and measuring. Preliminary results are available and will be discussed in this presentation.
  2. Presentation from the Kyrgyz consultant on grey re-exports, and the experience of testing and measuring grey re-exports in Kyrgyzstan.
  3. Discussion from UNCTAD on the progress in measuring illicit financial flows in other pilot countries and the future of measuring Illicit Financial Flows, the effects of illicit financial flows on the economy and society, and policy implications.

Opening and Closing Remarks

Rikke Munk Hansen
Rikke Munk Hansen
Chief of Economic and Environment Statistics Section, Statistics Division, ESCAP
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Rikke Munk Hansen is the Chief of Economic and Environment Statistics Section and the officer-in-charge of Statistics Division, ESCAP. She has worked with sustainable development in Asia and the Pacific during the past 21 years, including on statistics, the energy sector, and programme management and evaluation. Rikke manages ESCAP’s work on economic and environment statistics, including its efforts to develop guidance on disaster-related statistics. Rikke holds a Master’s degree in mathematics and computer science from Aalborg University, Denmark and the Technical University of Eindhoven, the Netherlands.

Moderator

Alick Mjuma Nyasulu
Alick Mjuma Nyasulu
Statistician, Economic and Environment Section, Statistics Division, ESCAP
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Alick Mjuma Nyasulu is a Statistician in the Economic and Environment Section of ESCAP’s Statistics Division. He currently manages a capacity development programme: The Regional Programme for the improvement of economic statistics in Asia and the Pacific. He is also greatly involved in the global work on updating the System of National Accounts (SNA). In addition, he manages a project on Illicit Financial Flows within Statistics Division focusing on tax evasion. His previous assignments include being a trainer in economic statistics at the Statistics Institute for Asia and the Pacific (SIAP) and an economic statistics advisor at the Pacific Community (SPC). He holds a Master of Applied Economics Degree from the University of Adelaide, Australia.

Speakers

Anastasia Maga
Anastasia Maga
Consultant, Statistics Division, ESCAP
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Chingiz Bekenov
Chingiz Bekenov
Consultant, Statistics Division, ESCAP
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Bojan Nastav
Bojan Nastav
Statistician, UNCTAD
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Alexey Kravchenko
Alexey Kravchenko
Economic Affairs Officer, Trade, Investment and Innovation Division, ESCAP
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Title Speaker/Presenter PPT
Estimating the effect of trade facilitation implementation on trade misinvoicing-based illicit financial flows and tax revenue in Asia and the Pacific Mr. Alexey Kravchenko, Economic Affairs Officer, Trade Policy and Facilitation Section, Trade, Investment and Innovation Section, ESCAP PPT
Conceptual framework for the statistical measurement of Illicit Financial Flows Mr. Bojan Nastav, Statistician, UNCTAD PPT

for more information, please contact

Statistics Division +66 2288 1234 [email protected]
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