- Today is Anti-Corruption Day
By Zafar I. Anjum
International corruption continues to undermine the progress of developing nations as rogue politicians, civic leaders and corporate representatives conduct “business as usual” to bypass bureaucratic red tape or circumvent competitive processes.
But the world is taking notice and punishing those organisations accused of corrupt practices. From damaged corporate reputations that lead to brand and stock devaluation to negative investor perceptions, legal action and even jail terms for corporate directors, the high cost of corruption can have a lasting effect on even the most diligent organisations.
Companies worldwide can fall victim at any time to bribery and corruption practices, particularly those organisations with multi-national operations utilising vast networks of third-party agents, suppliers, distributors and consultants.
Navigating the complex web of multi-jurisdiction laws and regulations around the world related to anti-bribery and anti-corruption practices can be daunting, exhausting financial resources and taxing personnel. But now there’s an all-encompassing solution for building strong global compliance frameworks and safeguarding your organisation from third-party risks.
Situation Analysis: The past decade has seen a dramatic rise in the prosecution of organisations accused in bribery schemes. Often regarded in many regions as a standard operating procedure necessary to move business along, the practise of bribery is fast becoming a focal point for governments and global watchdogs’ intent on levying heavy fines and penalties for companies involved in the practice.
In this situation which with the course of time, regional and international regulations are becoming stricter, particularly companies that are in the supply chain (importers, exporters, third-party service providers or indenters) for any foreign company.
Foreign companies are now being penalised if it is discovered that companies in their supply chain are involved in corrupt practices. These companies are increasingly complying with international laws such as the Foreign Corrupt Practices Act (FCPA), Malaysian Anti-Corruption. Commission (Amendment) Act 2018 which introduced a new far-reaching corporate liability provision, the UK Bribery Act, Brazilian Clean Company Act. This progress intends to eliminate corruption from supply chains and third-party working relationships of foreign companies. Companies that are not complying with these laws are being panelized and prosecuted heavily.
Anti-Bribery Anti-Corruption was invented to educate, equip and support the world’s leading business organisations with the latest in best-practice due diligence processes and procedures. We provide world-class consulting services to organisations seeking to validate or expand their existing compliance frameworks to maintain a competitive edge in the world marketplace.
The Anti-bribery Anti-corruption framework poses a complete suite of world-class services and solutions designed to help organisations mitigate the internal and external risks associated with operating in multi-jurisdiction and multi-cultural environments.
Bribery and Corruption Risk Management: An expert audit of your existing risk management system to assess effectiveness and vulnerabilities while ensuring your organisation adequately complies with FCPA regulations, UK Bribery Act laws, Anti-Money Laundering regulations, and other global, regional and local regulations.
ISO 37001:2016 Anti-Bribery Management System: Corporate Research Investigation offers independent global accredited ISO 37001:2016 certification to ensure that your organisation complies with this newly established standard, which is recognised and practised in more than 160 countries worldwide. Expert auditors and analysts work with your team to develop policies, communications, training, monitoring and reporting measures that integrate seamlessly with your existing management processes and controls.
Anti-Bribery Anti-Corruption Strategies: Third-Party Risk Management-3PRM-Certified solution provides the very best in third-party bribery and corruption risk management, corporate compliance programme, providing a proactive approach to mitigating risks from third-party affiliations and protecting your organisation from liability, brand damage and harm to the business.
Anti-Bribery Anti-Corruption presents innovative and globally accepted risk management solutions with an accredited corporate compliance program that can be applied to any organisation.
Becoming Compliant: The Benefits of ISO 37001 Certification – Outcomes: Because ISO 37001 is built around a set of generally accepted requirements, global organisations can become certified in the standard, utilising the services of an accredited third-party certifying body. Certification will add a distinct level of credibility to the organisation’s management systems and must be completed by a qualified, independent third-party specifically versed in ISO 37001:2016 certification.
Becoming certified in ISO 37001 enables the organisation to demonstrate that it has adequate procedures in place to detect and prevent bribery on a multi-national level. Additionally, such certification:
-Ensures that the organisation is implementing a viable anti-bribery management programme utilising widely accepted controls and systems.
-You are minimizing corruption and bribery lawsuit likelihood.
-Lessening the possible litigation penalty through demonstrating an effective and adequate compliance program
-Assures management, investors, business associates, personnel and other stakeholders that the organisation is actively pursuing internationally recognised and accepted processes to prevent bribery and corruption.
-Protects the organisation, its assets, shareholders and directors from the effects of bribery.
-Provides acceptable evidence to prosecutors or courts that the organisation has taken reasonable steps to prevent bribery and corruption.
Bribery continues to be a significant problem on a worldwide scale and conforming to an internationally recognised standard to combat the practice while promoting ethics in business will help organisations succeed in the ever-expanding global marketplace.
The writer is Group Chief Executive Officer CRI Group, ABAC Center of Excellence Limited, and can be reached at [email protected]