Launched in 2016, ISO 37001, also known as Anti-Bribery Management Systems, was created to establish a corporate framework to prevent, detect and investigate cases of bribery and corruption.
Bribery is a widespread phenomenon. It raises serious social, moral, economic and political concerns, undermines good governance, hinders development, and distorts competition. It erodes justice, undermines human rights and is an obstacle to the relief of poverty. Moreover, bribery also increases the cost of doing business, introduces uncertainties into commercial transactions, increases the cost of goods and services, and diminishes the quality of products and services, which can lead to a loss of life and property, destroys trust in institutions, and interferes with the fair and efficient operation of markets.
Governments have made progress in addressing bribery through international agreements such as the Organization for Economic Co-operation and Development Convention on Combating Bribery of Foreign Public Officials in International Business Transactions as well as by the United Nations Convention against Corruption and through their each government’s national laws. In most jurisdictions, it is an offence for individuals to engage in bribery, and there is a growing trend to make organizations as well as individuals liable for it.
However, the law alone is not sufficient to solve this problem. Organizations have a responsibility to proactively contribute in combating bribery. This can be achieved by an anti-bribery management system, which this document is intended to describe, and through the commitment of leaders in establishing a culture of integrity, transparency, openness, and compliance. The nature of an organization’s culture is critical to the success or failure of an anti-bribery management system.
A well-managed organization is expected to have a compliance policy supported by appropriate management systems to assist it in complying with its legal obligations and commitment to integrity. An anti-bribery policy is a component of an overall compliance policy. The anti-bribery policy and supporting management system can help an organization to avoid or mitigate the costs, risks and damages due to involvement in bribery, as well as promote trust and confidence in business dealings and enhance reputations.