03/07/2007 - Slovenia should strengthen its efforts to raise public and private sector awareness about the fight against foreign bribery, according to a new report by the OECD Working Group on Bribery. The low level of awareness about this issue could be a signal that the priority and commitment given to fighting corruption are declining in Slovenia. Also the Commission for the Prevention of Corruption, which has played a central role in the field of corruption prevention, is facing abolition. The uncertain future of the Commission fuels concerns about who will lead and coordinate Slovenia’s future efforts to raise awareness and prevent corruption, including foreign bribery.
The 37-country OECD Working Group on Bribery, in the context of its regular cycle of reviews, has just completed a review of Slovenia’s enforcement of the Convention on Combating Bribery of Foreign Public Officials in International Business Transactions.
The Working Group encourages the Slovenian authorities to support the coordination and implementation of anti-foreign bribery measures by the Commission, or any other independent body charged with preventing corruption. The other main recommendations of the OECD Working Group are that Slovenia should:
Enhance the expertise and resources available to police and prosecutors to fight complex economic crimes; and ensure that companies implicated in crimes are held liable;
Streamline pre-trial procedures and reduce court delays;
Work with companies to develop better strategies for the prevention and detection of foreign bribery;
Ensure that the law criminalises bribery through intermediaries and bribery for acts not falling within the foreign official’s regular duties.
The Working Group also highlighted positive aspects of Slovenia’s efforts to fight foreign bribery. The country has developed an effective system for responding to requests from other countries for information, and law enforcement authorities actively use a range of special investigative techniques in economic crime investigations. The Slovenian export credit institution is making on-going efforts to comply with the most recent OECD standards in deterring and detecting foreign bribery, and the Slovenian authorities continue to fine tune the anti-money laundering reporting system.
The report lists all the recommendations of the Working Group on pages 69-73, and includes an overview of recent enforcement actions and specific legal and policy features in Slovenia for combating the bribery of foreign public officials. As with all other OECD Working Group members, Slovenia will orally report to the Working Group on its actions to implement the Working Group’s recommendations after one year. Slovenia will submit a written report to the Working Group within two years, which will be the basis of a publicly-available Working Group evaluation of Slovenia’s implementation of the recommendations.
For further information, journalists are invited to contact the OECD’s Media Division (tel. + 33 1 45 24 97 00).
For more information on OECD’s work to fight corruption, visit www.oecd.org/corruption.