Increased Awareness of Anti-corruption Regulation ‘Improving Business Practices’

Concerns over breaking anti-corruption regulations are increasingly impacting companies’ business decisions, according to the latest
‘State of Anti-Corruption Compliance Survey’
issued by Dow Jones.

This year’s survey by the news and business information group interviewed compliance professionals from more than 350 companies worldwide. Of the companies represented, 71% stopped or delayed working with a business partner due to concerns about breaking anti-corruption regulations, an increase of nearly 20% from four years ago.

More than 55% of respondents said they had stopped or delayed a push into emerging markets for the same reason; up nearly 15% since 2009. Of the companies surveyed, non-finance companies felt the greatest impact on their business activities to an increasing degree.

“Dow Jones has been monitoring trends in the anti-corruption marketplace for the past five years, and the analysis our surveys produce provides a unique barometer on the changing face of the compliance industry,” said Rupert de Ruig, the group’s managing director of risk and compliance. “This year we’ve found an unprecedented awareness of anti-corruption regulation, and this is reflected in the survey results, with business practices becoming cleaner, more accountable and more process-driven.”

Nearly half the compliance professionals surveyed report losing business to unethical competitors in the past month; however for the first year the trend is slightly downward. This is despite an unprecedented awareness of corruption in business globally, and is perhaps a positive sign that firms are carrying out more ethical business.

As awareness of anti-corruption regulation increases, so too are the business benefits more keenly felt. An increasing number of respondents believe regulation has created greater fairness (72%), and improved business-partner relationships due to scrutiny (56%), while the number who believe it saves them money (54%) and improves their operational efficiency (42%) has gone down.

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