25/10/2007 - Chile should promptly adopt the necessary national legislation to improve its compliance with its international obligations under the Anti-Bribery Convention, according to a new report by the OECD Working Group on Bribery.
The 37-country OECD Working Group on Bribery has just completed its Phase 2 review of Chile’s enforcement of the OECD Convention on Combating the Bribery of Foreign Public Officials in International Business Transactions. While the Working Group notes that Chile has recently engaged in efforts to implement the Convention, it is seriously concerned that Chile has not responded to key recommendations in the Working Group’s 2004 Phase 1 report on Chile. In addition to the regular follow up processes, the Working Group has exceptionally decided to review Chile's legislation again one year from now (Phase 1bis review).
The main recommendations of the Working Group are that Chile should promptly take action to:
amend the law to introduce corporate liability for foreign bribery. Currently, prosecution and thus conviction of companies that engage in bribery remains impossible because companies cannot be held liable for criminal offences;
significantly increase sanctions for foreign bribery for natural persons and introduce sanctions for companies;
ensure that its courts have territorial jurisdiction over foreign bribery committed in part in Chilean territory and establish nationality jurisdiction over foreign bribery committed by Chilean nationals abroad;
facilitate the lifting of bank secrecy in foreign bribery cases, including those involving mutual legal assistance requests from other countries.
The Working Group also highlights a number of positive aspects in Chile's fight against foreign bribery including improved procedures for rendering mutual legal assistance and the addition of foreign bribery to the list of predicate offences for money laundering. The Working Group noted Chile's issuance of an internal instruction making explicit the prohibition on the deduction of bribes for tax purposes and welcomed its expressed intent to issue a publicly-available circular on the same issue.
The full report is available at http://www.oecd.org/dataoecd/38/10/39540391.pdf, with the recommendations on pages 52-55.
For further information, journalists are invited to contact the OECD’s Media Division on (33) 1 45 24 97 00.