New report on business efforts to combat corruption rings alarm bells

Writing on the Ethical Corporation website, Gareth Thomas looks at the findings from GoodCorporation’s paper on the effectiveness of anti-bribery programmes in combating corruption.

According to the paper, the risk of bribery is highest among third parties and intermediaries, yet due diligence in this area is worryingly low.

Across the globe, governments and regulators are intensifying their efforts to compel organisations to mitigate the risks of bribery by implementing more robust procedures. As a result, many organisations have invested considerable sums in anti-corruption compliance programmes.

The key to making sure these programmes are successful is ensuring that the procedures in place to prevent corruption are adequate. The findings published in GoodCorporation’s paper show that while there has been some improvement in the levels of adequacy since 2014, there are significant areas of concern, most notably in anti-corruption risk assessment and due diligence.

In his article, Gareth Thomas examines why these anti-corruption procedures can be so challenging, the barriers to adequacy and the emerging best practice that some of the best companies in GoodCorporation’s anti-corruption benchmark are succeeding in implementing.

Part of the problem is that risk assessments are undermined by being too high-level or generic. A detailed risk-assessment should focus on the granular details of corruption risks. Not only would taking a more risk-based approach to bribery prevention improve the overall adequacy of the programme it would also help with conducting ABC due diligence on third parties.

The full text is here.

Gareth Thomas is a director of GoodCorporation, leading work in anti-corruption and integrity compliance which has included ABC projects for multilateral development banks and other financial institutions and for companies involved in M&A projects.