In cooperation with the Institute for Global Challenges and the Law (GCL) the Berkeley Center for Law and Business (BCLB) convened this event as the first in a series of conferences on global anticorruption efforts
The workshop opened with a panel discussion on current trends in, and experiences with enforcement activity, under the Foreign Corrupt Practices Act (FCPA) with additional discussion of the United Nations Convention Against Corruption. The FCPA is a far-reaching statute which in recent years has been more aggressively enforced. The FCPA encompasses small foreign affiliates with tenuous ties to American corporations.
Recent FCPA enforcement activities have spanned industries, from oil to technology, and countries, from China to Nigeria. Actions have imposed corporate fines amounting to losses of up to $23 billion. According to Bruce Karpati, Assistant Regional Director, SEC, New York and Richard Messick, Senior Public Sector Specialist, World Bank, this trend is likely to continue. Charles James, General Counsel of Chevron, expressed concern that his company incurs significant costs to avoid the risk of FCPA liability. He believes that despite its extreme extraterritorial reach, the FCPA puts U.S. companies at a disadvantage.
The workshop concluded with a discussion of the policy and economic impacts of anticorruption regulations. Participants discussed the FCPA’s success in achieving the primary goal of anticorruption regulation – global development. Most speakers expressed optimistic views with regard to the success of global anticorruption efforts in curbing global poverty over the last ten years, but of course a great deal more work needs to be done. James, however, suggested that the FCPA may prevent real and lasting advances in anticorruption, as non-US entities are not similarly constrained.
The successful program provided BCLB and GCL with information that will be used in ongoing efforts to develop a research and policy agenda focused on FCPA activities internationally. We are currently planning future activities and events.
Executive Director, The Institute for Global Challenges and the Law
Executive Director, The Berkeley Center for Law and Business
Session One: FCPA: Current Enforcement Activity
Joyce Y. Smith
Richard E. Messick
Session Two: Policy and Economic Impact of Anti-Corruption Regulations
Christopher Edley Jr.
Charles A. James
Judith A. Miller