OECD seriously concerned about Turkey’s foreign bribery probe level
In a report issued on Oct. 23, the OECD’s Working Group on Bribery expressed concern about Turkey’s efforts to combat foreign bribery.The OECD has stated that it remains seriously concerned about Turkey’s low level of foreign bribery law enforcement, as well as certain aspects of its corporate liability legislation.
In a report issued on Oct. 23, the OECD’s Working Group on Bribery expressed concern about Turkey’s efforts to combat foreign bribery, citing a Transparency International study that showed that only four OECD countries were actively enforcing the group’s anti-bribery convention: the United States, Germany, Great Britain and Switzerland.
“Turkey is a significant and geopolitically critical economy. Its companies, like those from many other countries, operate in corruption-prone sectors and countries. Turkey’s level of enforcement of its foreign bribery laws, with just a single prosecution leading to an acquittal in 11 years, is considerably low. The Working Group is therefore concerned that Turkey is insufficiently proactive in its enforcement efforts,” the OECD Working Group on Bribery stated in the report.
However, the report also highlighted positive aspects of Turkey’s efforts to fight foreign bribery, saying that Turkey has improved the legal framework for its foreign bribery offence and has effectively cooperated in two foreign bribery investigations conducted by other Parties to the Convention. In addition, it stated that Turkey’s tax administration is well poised to assist in the detection of foreign bribery, and said the country had also significantly increased its awareness-raising activities among judges and prosecutors.
The OECD adopted a Convention on Combating Bribery of Foreign Public Officials in International Business Transactions in 1997. Widely seen as an important instrument in the drive to curb global corruption, the treaty requires its 41 signatory countries to make foreign bribery a crime for which individuals and enterprises can be made responsible.
However, Transparency International has said most exporting nations ignore the OECD Treaty. These countries are responsible for around two-thirds of global exports and almost 90 per cent of total foreign direct investment outflows.
Among those with little or no enforcement were Japan, the Netherlands, South Korea, Russia, Spain, Belgium, Mexico, Brazil, Ireland, Poland, Turkey, Denmark, Czech Republic, Luxembourg, Chile and Israel.
Others, including France, Sweden, South Africa and New Zealand, were only enforcing the convention in a “limited” way, said Transparency International.