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Foreign Corrupt Practices Act Settlements

In seeking to provide American companies with an equal opportunity to compete in international dealings with overseas businesses, the United States government is cracking down on the bribery of foreign officials through continued efforts to enforce the Foreign Corrupt Practices Act.  Since enacted in 1977, the law has expanded its definition of “American” to include foreign companies that list themselves on the U.S. stock exchanges, sell securities in the country or do business here.  “Facilitation payments” and other forms of dealings often violate the act because of cultural differences or companies’ failure to recognize the extent of the law’s application, which is broader in scope than the laws of many other countries.  Settlements with companies found to have violated the law exceed $3 billion USD.

Source: “Foreign Firms Most Affected by a U.S. Law Barring Bribes,” Leslie Wayne.

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