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 Foreign bribery

The Australian Government takes a strong stance against foreign bribery and other forms of corruption.

Bribery of a public foreign official (foreign bribery) is a serious criminal offence that carries heavy penalties.

Foreign bribery results in inefficient allocation of resources and economic distortions. It is a threat to democracy and the rule of law, corrosive of good governance and an impediment to economic development. Foreign bribery by Australians and Australian businesses can damage our international standing and shrink the global market for Australian exports and investment.

International cooperation is required to effectively combat foreign bribery by ensuring that countries adopt common rules. Australia is a member of the Organisation for Economic Co-operation and Development (OECD) Working Group on Bribery and a party to the key international conventions concerned with combating foreign bribery:

OECD Working Group on Bribery

The OECD Working Group on Bribery monitors implementation and enforcement of the Anti-Bribery Convention and provides comprehensive information about global anti-corruption initiatives.

Australia's anti-foreign bribery regime is subject to periodic review by the working group. Australia's most recent report back to the working group occurred in December 2014. The working group found that Australia made good progress on addressing a number of important recommendations from our 2012 Phase 3 review.

The working group publishes a report on each of its reviews and these are available from the OECD website.

Foreign bribery online learning module

The Attorney-General's Department has developed an online learning module on foreign bribery. The module is intended for use by industry and government, and provides advice on Australia's anti-bribery policy, relevant laws and how they apply, and steps that business can take to help promote compliance.

The foreign bribery online learning module is free to access and supports users with accessibility requirements.

Foreign Bribery Information and Awareness Pack

The Australian Government's Foreign Bribery Information and Awareness Pack provides key information on the offence of bribing a foreign public official and steps for reporting suspected foreign bribery.

Fact sheets, brochures and posters from the pack are available to download below:

Whole-of-government approach

Australia takes a whole-of-government approach to combating foreign bribery. A summary of the roles and responsibilities of agencies in responding to foreign bribery is outlined in the document below:

The following agencies provide online information and assistance on foreign bribery for business and the public: