Public consultation on Phase 4 monitoring of the OECD Anti-Bribery Convention
Call for comment by the OECD Working Group on Bribery
The OECD Working Group on Bribery (WGB) launched a public consultation on 5 November 2014 on the next phase of country monitoring under the Convention on Combating Bribery of Foreign Public Officials in International Business Transactions (the OECD Anti-Bribery Convention). The public consultation came to an end on 1 December 2014.
The Anti-Bribery Convention and related OECD Anti-Bribery instruments require the 41 Parties to criminalise bribery of foreign public officials in international business transactions and provide for a host of related measures that make this effective. Parties' compliance with the Convention is monitored through an ongoing system of peer-review which is carried out by the WGB. This rigorous monitoring process has developed a reputation as the "gold standard" of country monitoring.
By mid-2015, almost all Parties will have undergone three phases of monitoring. Each Phase has a different focus:
Phase 1 evaluates the adequacy of a country's legislation to implement the Convention.
Phase 2 assesses whether a country is applying its legislation effectively.
Phase 3 focuses on enforcement of the laws implementing the Convention and associated instruments.
All of the country monitoring reports are published on the OECD website. Phases 2 and 3 provide for an on-site visit, including face-to-face discussions with public agencies, law enforcement, companies, business organisations, private sector lawyers, non-governmental organisations, media and academia.
The WGB is now planning its next round of evaluations (Phase 4). It is imperative for the ongoing success of the Convention that the WGB's high standard of monitoring is maintained throughout Phase 4. Inclusions of the private sector and civil society has always been an essential component of monitoring; hence, stakeholders are invited to comment on any relevant area of interest. The following questions may provide a starting point:
1. Phase 4 will focus more closely on detection, enforcement, and corporate liability, and other major topics relevant to adequate implementation of the Convention's obligations. What in your view are the most relevant areas relating to bribery of foreign public officials which should be assessed?
2. Phase 4 will take a more tailored approach, focusing more closely on the specific enforcement situation in each country. Are there any specific areas which, in your view, should be covered relating to the country's enforcement of its foreign bribery legislation under the Convention?
3. What steps would you recommend that the WGB consider in the case of continued failure of a country to adequately implement its obligations under the Convention?
4. What would be the most beneficial and practical way for the private sector and civil society engagement in this next round of monitoring?
5. How would you suggest that the WGB increase the visibility of its work?