February 16, 2015

The Government’s anti-corruption plan

The plan is a milestone in the UK’s effort to fight corruption and is a foreshadow of a raft of new measures and initiatives.

It sets out more than 60 recommended action points for the Government and its partners, which include the Serious Fraud Office (SFO), the National Crime Agency (NCA), the City of London Police (COLP), and its overseas anti-corruption and financial regulators.

The Plan largely follows the Government’s October 2013 ‘Serious and Organised Crime Strategy’, and seeks to apply the four ‘P's’ to bribery and corruption:

  • to "pursue" wrongdoers;
  • to "prevent" people from engaging in corruption;
  • to "protect" against corruption through risk assessments and transparency; and
  • to "prepare" in reducing the impact of corruption, by assisting whistle-blowers and raising global standards.

There is also an intention to increase engagement with overseas partners, which do not just include governments or regulatory agencies, but also the United Nations and other international organisations.

Procurement, defence, and sport are the activities and sectors targeted with specific measures.

It will be implemented by an inter-ministerial group chaired by Matthew Hancock, Minister for Business and appointed by the PM as the Government’s Anti-Corruption Champion. It gives the next 12 months as the timescale for delivering most of the planned actions, bearing in mind the General Election in May might affect implementation if there is a change of government.

If you have questions about how the Bribery Act may affect your business, please feel free to contact John North or Claus Andersen on 020 7583 2222.

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