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OECD Public Consultation on Liability of Legal Persons

The Foreign Corrupt Practices Working Party of the Business Law Section of the Law Council of Australia (BLS Working Party) is pleased to contribute a submission to the OECD Working Group on Bribery (WGB) in response to its public consultation on liability of legal persons. 

The Law Council of Australia is Australia’s peak professional body representing the interests of lawyers in Australia. The Law Council of Australia is concerned to ensure that Australian laws relating to corrupt practices involving foreign public officials are effective, proportionate and dissuasive. 

This submission is primarily approached from the perspective of the lessons available from the operation of the Australian regulatory regime in the international context. As noted in the Phase 3 Report concerning Australia (2012) and the Phase 3 Follow Up Report (April 2015), the Australian enforcement record has been poor to date, although substantial progress has been made in recent years to improve enforcement outcomes. 

The BLS Working Party has the following submissions on the issues for discussion raised in the consultation paper. In the interests of brevity, a degree of familiarity with the Australian regime is assumed. The Phase 3 Report contains an accurate summary of the Australian regime. We can elaborate on any point we make below if that would assist. 

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