Transparency International’s annual progress report shows that only a meagre 10% of the countries that signed the OECD Anti-Bribery Convention 16 years ago actively enforce the convention. José Ugaz, the Director of Transparency International, voiced his concern about this trend and emphasised that the violation of these international obligations can and will not be tolerated. He stated that non-commitment with the OECD should not be without serious consequences.
Although the enforcement rate in four countries has risen, Argentina slipped from the ‘limited enforcement’ category in 2014 to the ‘little or no enforcement’ category this year.
On a positive note, the Netherlands has risen from the ‘little or no enforcement’ category last year to the ‘limited enforcement’ category in 2015. The home country solution, which resulted in a settlement between SBM Offshore and the Dutch Public Prosecutor, helped the Netherlands climb one rung higher in the rankings. Global Investigations Review praised De Brauw for the way it advised SBM Offshore in this USD 240 million bribery settlement. Last month, De Brauw had the honour to be named internal investigations firm of the year in the “best regional or boutique practice” by the GIR.
Also, the Dutch government is taking a tougher stance in combating corruption by increasing the resources of anti-corruption bodies and increasing penalties, attributed to this result. The Netherlands is demonstrating its ambition to improve its enforcement ranking by focusing on the prosecution of individuals and showing more involvement in international bribery and corruption cases when a Dutch company or person is involved.
Country ranking overview:
Click here to view table.
Click here to read Transparency International’s Progress Report 2015.