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United Kingdom Rethinks Bribery Law

Neil Baker | January 14, 2011

The U.K. government is reviewing the potential impact of its tough new bribery and corruption laws amid concerns that they could damage the country's economic recovery.

The Ministry of Justice confirmed that the Bribery Act, which is due to take effect in April, will be looked at as part of the government's wider “Growth Review,” which is aimed at reducing the regulatory burden on businesses.

The Bribery Act will make it a criminal offense for British companies to offer or pay bribes anywhere in the world, and requires them to have “adequate procedures” in place to prevent bribery. It makes no allowance for small “facilitation payments”.

A ministry spokesperson would not comment on the extent to which the Act is being reconsidered, but said: “The Growth Review is ensuring that every government department is doing everything it can to identify the...

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