Are Foreign Bribery Prosecutions on the Rise?

Prosecutions for Foreign Bribery cases are increasing but Governments need to Maintain Pressure on Companies if Progress is always to Continue,Says an Investigation by Transparency International (TI)

The report by TI Exporting Corruption? reviews how enforcement of the OECD&rsquos (Organisation for Economic Co-operation and Development) Anti-Bribery Convention has progressed since it was implemented in 1997.

The convention enforces laws forbidding firms from bribing companies or individuals abroad to win deals or dodge local regulations when you are conducting international business. After 2011, 250 individuals and almost 100 companies in countries which are signatories to the convention have been sanctioned on account of foreign bribery-related cases.

America shows the greatest enforcement with the convention, with 275 criminal prosecutions completed after 2011. Germany completed over 100 cases. Uniform 66 people have visited jail for bribing overseas officials in operation deals.

However, active enforcement in the convention relates to only seven countries, which take into account 28 percent of world exports Denmark, Germany, Italy, Norway, Switzerland, britain and US. TI warned that this was inadequate to bring about significant change.

Concerns lie with Japan, containing brought below 10 criminal prosecutions forward while Mexico, Greece and South Africa are some of the 18 countries are yet to get any major criminal charges.

TI said government support of the convention has fallen over the past few years due to the international recession. It urged government leaders to reject arguments that winning foreign orders during the recession justifies condoning foreign bribery.

Chandu Krishnan, executive director of Transparency International UK, said: &ldquoIt can be done for companies to stay conducting business in high-corruption-risk countries but strong systems must be in position. If companies rely heavily on agents and intermediaries, they must make sure these are contractually bound. In the event you count on government officials to acquire business done, there’s greater exposure to demands for bribery.

&ldquoCompanies must set a dark tone in the top that they can not accept bribery and this must apply to all of the countries they be employed in, there can be no half-measures. Joint small business ventures can even be more at risk to bribery so companies must constantly monitor their risk.&rdquo

In the further study by TI, many-in-four business executives (27 percent) believed bribery by the competitor resulted in direct costs with their business in the past yr.