Globally, one in four people has, according to the most recent survey by Transparency International the Global Corruption Barometer 2013. And, one in two people think corruption has worsened in the past two years.

The results make it clear that Australian companies doing business in places such as Mozambique, Zimbabwe, India, and Mongolia (China is noticeably absent from the survey) would do well to ensure that their employees remain up-to-date on the anti-bribery and anti-corruption obligations that will likely apply to them.  Bribery by an Australian of a foreign official, even if customary, can result in imprisonment and hefty fines. 

And down under? Although Australia is perceived to be of one of the least corrupt nations in the world,  53% of Australian respondents still say that corruption in Australia is either a problem or a serious problem. Only 16% of Australian respondents were willing to say that the Australian Government’s actions in the fight against corruption are effective.  The Government is undertaking a review of Australia’s anti-bribery legislation after a public consultation which closed in February 2012.  In light of the growing concern to combat bribery and corruption worldwide, in addition to strengthening Australia’s own anti-bribery and corruption legislation, we expect to see an increase in enforcement action.