Alliance Against Bribery
Thirty-eight countries are parties to the Organization for Economic Cooperation and Development(OECD)’s Anti-Bribery Convention; they have agreed to prevent, detect, and investigate bribery and corruption. By protecting whistleblowers, working closely with the private sector to adopt ethics and compliance programs, and reviewing their policies on small “facilitation payments”—among other actions—the OECD member states reinforce their commitment to fighting corruption.
The OECD Working Group on Bribery supports the effort by monitoring compliance and providing an evaluation procedure. Monitoring takes place in three phases. First, a country’s legislation is evaluated to determine adequacy. Next, the effectiveness of the legislation’s applications are examined. Finally, the third phase focuses on enforcement of these laws. The OECD says “the practical impact of the monitoring process is evident,” pointing out that tax deductibility for bribes paid to foreign officials is no longer possible in any of the 38 countries. The Working Group’s enforcement data was published for the first time in June 2010, and includes the number of criminal, civil, and administrative cases of foreign bribery that have resulted in a final disposition (such as a conviction or acquittal) or similar outcome.
Highlights from the Working Group on Bribery Include:
- 148 individuals and 77 entities have been sanctioned under criminal proceedings for foreign bribery in 13 parties between the time the Convention entered into force in 1999 and the end of 2009.
- At least 40 of the sanctioned individuals were sentenced to prison for foreign bribery.
- Approximately 280 investigations are ongoing in 21 parties to the anti-bribery convention.
Source: The Organization for Economic Cooperation and Development, www.oecd.org.