30/06/2011 - Luxembourg must step up its efforts to detect and prosecute cases of bribery of foreign public officials, particularly now that its legal framework has been strengthened, in compliance with the Anti-Bribery Convention, to allow criminal proceedings to be taken not only against individuals but also against companies involved in such offences.
The OECD Working Group on Bribery has just completed its report on Luxembourg's application of the Convention of Combating Bribery of Foreign Public Officials in International Business Transactions and related instruments.
The Working Group recommends that Luxembourg:
- Ensures that its new criminal liability regime applicable to companies effectively allows companies to be held responsible in the event of transnational bribery;
- Continues to strengthen the powers and means of investigation at the disposal of its police force, including with regard to obtaining information from banking and financial establishments as well as tax authorities;
- Reviews the applicability of its offence of bribery of foreign public officials;
- Increases the awareness of both the public sector and the business sector of the importance of detecting and reporting transnational bribery, and of the protection afforded under Luxembourg legislation to whistleblowers.
The report commends the efforts deployed by Luxembourg to combat bribery, and in particular the introduction into its legal system, in 2010, of a criminal liability regime for companies associated with a high level of sanctions. The Working Group congratulated Luxembourg on the priority it has given to responding to requests for mutual legal assistance received from other countries that are signatories to the Convention. It also welcomed the entry into force of a new law on the protection of whistleblowers and two laws aimed at making it easier to obtain information, in the course of investigations and prosecutions, from banking and financial establishments as well as tax authorities.
The report, which can be found at www.oecd.org/daf/nocorruption, lists all the Working Group’s recommendations, pages [58-62], and includes a general presentation of recently implemented measures as well as the legal and policy characteristics specifically relating to Luxembourg’s combat against the bribery of foreign public officials. Like all the other members of the OECD’s Working Group – which includes the 34 OECD Member countries plus Argentina, Brazil, Bulgaria, Russia and South Africa – Luxembourg will present an oral report to the Working Group in a year’s time on the measures taken to implement the Working Party’s recommendations. Luxembourg will submit a written report to the Working Group in two years’ time, which the Working Group will use as a basis for drafting a report that will be made public on the implementation by Luxembourg of the Group’s recommendations.
For further information, journalists are invited to contact Mary Crane-Charef, Communications Officer in the OECD’s Anti-Corruption Division, e-mail Mary.Crane-Charef@oecd.org; (33) 1 45 24 9704.
For further information on the OECD’s work on the combat against corruption, see: www.oecd.org/daf/nocorruption.