Thursday, April 25, 2024

Funding developmental goals must be an overarching objective

The large financing gap for Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) cannot be closed solely through government revenues but tackling illicit financial flows as well. Currently Botswana continues to lose billions of Pula annually to illicit financial flows. Various data prepared by notable institutions such as the World Bank and Global Financial Integrity (GFI) shows that Botswana bleeds money mainly due to trade misinvoicing, which is a combination of tax, customs, and trade fraud.

Although there is no international consensus on how to define IFF, the United Nations (UN) defines it as all cross-border financial transfers which contravene national or international laws. Combating illicit financial flows is a major challenge for Botswana. However it is also an increasingly important priority for the country because it is a barrier to sustainable development, and to the implementation of the development goals.

In a research conducted by GFI in 2015, the data highlighted that several countries have trade misinvoicing levels significantly higher than the global average including: Sierra Leone (39.8%), Botswana (31.8%), Ethiopia (29.3%) and Cameroon (26%).

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