Passage of the Bribery Act is particularly  interesting in the wake of the convictions of Rio Tinto officials in China for bribery.
In the final days of business before the General Election, Parliament has passed new anti-bribery legislation, sending an unequivocal message that bribery by British companies will not be tolerated at home or abroad. Development and anti-corruption agencies including Bond, CAFOD, Global Witness and Tearfund welcome yesterday’s Royal Assent of the Bribery Act as an important step in combating bribery by UK companies. ‘We know from our work in Africa, Asia and Latin America that it is the poorest and most vulnerable people who suffer the most as a result of bribery,’ says Laura Webster, Tearfund Head of Policy. ‘The party which forms the next government must show a high-level commitment to use this legislation to stamp out bribery by UK companies.’  The Act brings UK laws up to date by creating a new offence of bribing a foreign public official and a corporate offence for companies that fail to prevent bribery.