Anti-bribery initiatives area hot topic globally, and increasingly a discussion item at Canadian companies. Do these initiatives really matter? The short answer is definitely yes!
Canadian companies with international operations can be caught under the laws of the country in which bribery takes place, under Canadian law, or even under the laws of other countries. Some anti-bribery laws have quite the extra-territorial reach. Any public company listed in the U.S. is caught under the U.S. Foreign Corrupt Practices Act (FCPA ), no matter where bribery of foreign public officials takes place. Eight of the 10 largest-ever FCPA fines relate to non-U.S. companies.
The following article talks about some of the issues that Canadian directors should know regarding anti-bribery and the FCPA. It originally appeared in the March 2011 issue of Director Journal, a publication of the Institute of Corporate Directors (ICD).