Following completion of its report on France's implementation of the Convention on Combatting Bribery of Foreign Public Officials in International Business Transactions and related instruments, the OECD Working Group on Bribery has announced that it is seriously concerned at the lack of foreign bribery convictions in France. Only five convictions, one of which is currently being appealed, have been secured against companies in the last twelve years. The Working Group considers that French sanctions are not sufficiently powerful and has expressed concern over the lack of confiscation of the proceeds of corruption.

The report did, however, recognise the steps being taken by the Ministry of Justice to ensure greater impartiality of the Public Prosecutor's Office. The report also welcomed the work of two specialised agencies that should facilitate seizure and confiscation in future, along with efforts to prevent corruption and raise awareness. For our briefing on TI's report on enforcement of the Convention, please click here.