Foreign Corrupt Practices Act (FCPA): Congressional Interest and Executive Enforcement [February 7, 2012]   [open pdf - 201KB]

"The Foreign Corrupt Practices Act of 1977 (FCPA) was enacted principally to prevent corporate bribery of foreign officials. This act had three major parts: (1) it required the keeping by corporations of accurate books, records, and accounts; (2) it required issuers registered with the Securities and Exchange Commission to maintain a responsible internal accounting control system; and (3) it prohibited bribery by American corporations of foreign officials. For a number of years after passage of the act, Congress debated amending it in response to numerous criticisms. On August 23, 1988, the President signed into law the Omnibus Trade and Competitiveness Act of 1988, of which Title V is known as the Foreign Corrupt Practices Act Amendments of 1988. […] In 1998 the act was further amended in order to implement the Organization of Economic Cooperation and Development Convention on Combating Bribery of Foreign Public Officials in International Business Transactions. These amendments expanded the scope of coverage to include some foreign persons and extended jurisdiction beyond the borders of the United States. […] Especially prominent recently have been suggestions that businesses convicted of violating the Foreign Corrupt Practices Act should be debarred from receiving federal government contracts. Bills were introduced in the 111th Congress to address this issue. In addition to congressional scrutiny of the act, the executive branch appears to have increased oversight of suspected American businesses for alleged violations. There have been a number of settlements and indictments concerning violations of the act. In early 2012 the federal government had both successes and losses resulting from its FCPA charges."

Report Number:
CRS Report for Congress, R41466
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