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July 07, 2009 

OECD Acknowledges Turkey's Progress in Combating Bribery

The Organization of Economic Cooperation and Development's (OECD) Working Group on Bribery recently issued a report (pdf) (the "Phase 2bis" report) addressing Turkey's progress in complying with the OECD Anti-Bribery Convention.

The report examined Turkey's progress in the following areas: (1) investigating and prosecuting allegations of bribing foreign public officials; (2) re-instating the liability of legal persons; and (3) awareness-raising by the Turkish Government.

The report noted that Turkey has taken "important steps" to address recommendations from the Working Group, including:

  • Two foreign bribery cases are currently under investigation, and Turkish officials have recently increased their efforts to gather information about allegations against Turkish companies in the 2005 Final Report of the Independent Inquiry Committee in the UN Oil-for-Food Programme.
  • A draft law re-introducing corporate liability for foreign bribery is currently under consideration by the Turkish Parliament.
  • Turkey has implemented a wide range of awareness-raising efforts, which appear to have significantly raised awareness in the business community about the prohibition against bribing foreign public officials in the Turkish Penal Code.

Despite this progress the OECD Working Group's noted that it remains concerned that Turkey continues to be in non-compliance with Article 2 of the Anti-Bribery Convention as long as companies are not liable for foreign bribery and recommended that Turkey urgently adopt the draft law on corporate liability.

The Working Group also recommended a peer review analysis of the new law on corporate liability once it is enacted and a further assessment of progress on foreign bribery investigations and prosecutions in December 2009.

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