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Chapter 17: The Global Architecture of Foreign Bribery Control: Applying the OECD Bribery Convention
17 The global architecture of foreign bribery control: applying the OECD Bribery Convention Cindy Davids and Grant Schubert INTRODUCTION The Organisation for Economic Co-Operation and Development (OECD) drew significant international attention to the behaviour of domestic companies doing business overseas with the Convention on Combating Bribery of Foreign Public Officials in International Business Transactions (hereafter, ‘the Anti-bribery Convention’, OECD, 1997). Prior to the promulgation of the Convention, although domestic bribery was generally regarded (at least formally) as a criminal offence in most countries (Deming, 2006), the issue of bribery in international business transactions, including those conducted entirely within the borders of another jurisdiction, was rarely considered a criminal offence under respective domestic laws. The USA was the notable exception, having introduced the Foreign Corrupt Practices Act (FCPA) 1977, largely as a response to revelations of domestic and foreign corrupt practices by US businesses (Santangelo et al., 2007). At the time the US government was bitterly criticized by its own companies who argued that the new rules disadvantaged them in the global market (Salbu, 1997). Many observers regard the eventual development of the OECD Convention as, at least in part, a response by pressure from the USA to level the playing field (Baughn et al., 2010). To 2010, 38 countries have implemented domestic legislation in accord with the Convention requirements, criminalizing the practice of pursuing commercial advantage through bribery of public officials in another jurisdiction. Building on the philosophy and impetus of the Anti-bribery Convention, a web of related international arrangements...
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