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Report: Most exporters do little to prevent foreign bribery

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BERLIN (AP) An anti-corruption watchdog on Tuesday ranked the United States and the United Kingdom as the biggest exporters most active in enforcing rules aimed at banning companies from paying bribes in foreign markets, but said many others did not. they are doing nothing.

Berlin-based Transparency International said only four of the 47 countries the US, UK, Switzerland and Israel, accounting for 16.5% of global exports were actively enforcing anti-bribery legislation in 2019.

This is down from seven countries, accounting for 27% of exports, which were actively implementing in 2018.

Our research shows that many countries are barely investigating foreign bribery, said Gillian Dell, lead author of the Transparency report. Unfortunately, it is extremely common for businesses in rich countries to export corruption to poorer countries, undermining institutions and development.

The 1997 Organization for Economic Co-operation and Development Convention prohibits bribery to obtain contracts and licenses, or to evade local taxes and laws.

China, the world’s largest exporter and non-signatory to the convention, was found to be implementing little or no implementation, in a category that also includes India and members of Congress Japan and Korea.

Germany, the third largest exporter in the world and also a signatory to the convention, carries out only moderate implementation, as do other major exporters such as France, Italy and Spain.

Germany and Italy attended fewer cases in 2019 than last year, while France and Spain improved their performance.

The Netherlands, Canada and Austria all signatory to the convention are the largest exporters in the category of those showing only limited implementation.

“Many governments choose to turn a blind eye when their companies use bribes to gain business in foreign markets,” said Transparency International chief Delia Ferreira Rubio. The G20 and other major economies have a responsibility to enforce the rules. .

Transparency Recommendations include ending secrecy in company ownership, which makes it difficult to investigate foreign bribery and explore the increased responsibility of parent companies for the actions of their foreign subsidiaries.

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