Bribery Act & Proceeds of Crime - Written by on Tuesday, July 30, 2013 14:57 - 0 Comments

Building on compliance? Construction sector survey due out soon.

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By Anna Austin, Associate Solicitor, Pinsent Masons.

The construction industry often gets a bad rap.

WIth that in mind, for those who keep a beady eye on surveys and love statistics, there are only a few weeks to go until we find out if the construction industry has improved from a corruption perspective in recent years.

The Chartered Institute of Building (“CIOB”) recently closed a new industry survey to update its 2006 findings – yes 2006 - (which were shocking) where over 40% of those surveyed said that they had been offered a bribe.

The 2006 survey received 1,404 responses which reported corruption was present in various aspects of the construction industry. Opinions differed in relation to where acceptable networking and development of working relationships crosses the line and becomes corruption.  The planning permission phase of construction projects and the employment of illegal workers were identified in the 2006 survey as being particularly corrupt.

Other corrupt practices identified were the use of non-cash incentives to gain advantages and the altering of daywork sheets.

Last time round over half of the 2006 respondents felt as though corruption levels in the construction industry had not changed in the five years leading up to 2006.

Since the 2006 survey the CIOB has been working with the Construction Sector Transparency Initiative, the Serious Fraud Office and the Anti-Corruption Forum to promote good practice and plenty of water has passed under the bridge, including the now much hyped Bribery Act.

Opinion

It will be nice to have some new statistics. Over the last couple of years we have spoken to numerous construction companies about anti-bribery compliance and have trotted out the old stats which were becoming, to say the least, pretty tired.

We’d like to think that we’ve made an impact! Let’s see…

The results from the latest survey will be published in September.  Watch this space for our take.

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