Bribery

Bribery Act 2010

The Bribery Act has strengthened UK legislation on bribery. The Act came into force on 1st July 2011. It applies to UK companies of all sizes, including growers, and covers business carried out in and outside the UK. The Act sets out 4 bribery offences:

  • Attempting to pay a bribe
  • Receiving a bribe
  • Bribing foreign public officials
  • Failure by a business to prevent bribery

Anti-bribery Procedures

To prevent bribery - and have a defence in case a charge of bribery is made against you - you should:

  • Identify any business activities where the Act might be relevant
  • Assess whether your business is at risk and, if so, the level of that risk
  • Have an anti-bribery policy in place containing procedures proportionate to the risk you have identified, the scope and size of your business, and the country/countries in which you do business. For a sample policy click here.
  • Use due diligence to assess who you are dealing with and who you appoint to represent you
  • Communicate, train and raise awareness among employees and business partners
  • Monitor and review your procedures

Note that the following are not considered as an act of bribery:

  • Providing genuine business hospitality
  • Carrying out reasonable promotional activities

Penalties range from a fine to 10 years imprisonment, depending on the severity of the offence. For more information on:

  • The UK Bribery Act and guidance
  • How the law will operate
  • How to deal with the risks of bribery

Click here.