PWC BRIBERY ACT GUIDE FOR BRIC BUSINESS

15 Nov, 2011

PwC releases new guide to help companies avoid UK Bribery Act risks when doing business in BRIC countries –

A new guide that provides practical advice to UK commercial organisations doing business in the BRIC countries (Brazil, Russia, India and China) to help them avoid prosecution under the UK’s new bribery laws is  published today by PwC in conjunction with four BRIC territory  trade bodies.

The Bribery Act 2010 came into force on 1 July this year and is a far-reaching piece of legislation that has potentially significant ramifications for UK businesses that operate in domestic and overseas markets, as well as foreign ones doing business in the UK. The Act’s global reach means that UK organisations operating in foreign markets could be liable for prosecution in the UK if they are accused of engaging in certain corrupt practices.  

With this in mind, PwC has worked with the UK-India Business Council, the China-Britain Business Council, the Brazilian Chamber of Commerce for Great Britain, and the Russo-British Chamber of Commerce to publish: Responding to the UK Bribery Act 2010.

The aim of the report is to raise awareness of bribery risks, as well as suggesting how commercial organisations can mitigate those risks and protect themselves from the potentially damaging consequences of infringement – not least in reputational terms.

Tony Parton, forensic services partner, PwC said: “The UK Act is now widely seen as one of the toughest anti-bribery laws in the developed world. The overarching precept of the law is that a commercial organisation must understand and document the risks it faces and take appropriate steps to address them.  Any bribery prevention procedures should be proportionate to those risks.

“Simply having an anti-bribery policy is not enough. An organisation needs to ensure it has an anti-bribery compliance programme that provides evidence of ongoing and up-to-date controls. In addition, it must communicate effectively, ensuring a strong ethical culture within an organisation.

“Implementing an effective anti-bribery programme can be a significant undertaking. The difficulties and time it takes to embed processes and change cultural norms should not be underestimated. The stakes are potentially high and organisations would be well advised to avoid any delay in ensuring effective processes are in place.”

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