《经济学人》:姗姗来迟的反贿赂法即将生效
日期:2011-05-05 13:50

(单词翻译:单击)

Anti-bribery laws反商业贿赂法Palms ungreased揩油
A long-delayed anti-bribery law will soon come into force
姗姗来迟的反贿赂法即将生效

THERE is a lingering assumption among Britons that their country stands for probity and fair play. Ask about it abroad, though, and you sometimes get a different reaction. Anti-corruption campaigners still bring up Tony Blair’s decision in 2006 to abandon an investigation into a ??43 billion ($70 billion) weapons deal with Saudi Arabia. Then there is the peculiar paucity of British “sanctions” imposed under an international bribery convention: two between 1999 and 2009, compared with 88 in America, 26 in Germany and 40 in Italy.

英国人一直自矜的认为他们的国家建立在正直和公正的基石上。然而国外的反应却不尽如此。反腐竞选人依旧利用Tony Blair2006年的决定拒绝调查与Saudi Arabia的一项43亿英镑(70亿美元)的军火交易。因此国际贿赂协议对英国的约束力就罕见的微弱,在1999年和2009年之间只有2项受到制裁,相较而言美国有88项,德国26项,意大利40项。

Stung by such talk, in 2008 the previous Labour government proposed a new law updating the country’s antiquated rules on backhanders and bungs, including those dispensed overseas. Both the Liberal Democrats and the Conservatives, now in government, backed the law in opposition. It reached the statute book in April last year; under it, miscreants risk big fines and up to ten years in prison. It was due to take effect in April this year, after the publication in January of guidelines on how to apply it. But, as the date approached, the Ministry of Justice said the implementation of the law had been postponed to allow the guidelines to be tweaked, following intense lobbying from business groups such as the Confederation of British Industry.

被如此言论激怒的前工党政府2008年提出了一项新法律,以改革对回扣和红包的过时规定,在海外具有同等约束力。但是政府里的自由民主党和保守党都反对此法案。它涉及去年4月的法令全书,在该全书中,歹徒将被处以巨额罚款和最多10年监禁。在今年1月实施指导条例公布之后,该法预定4月份生效。但是随着日期临近,在一些商业集团如英国工业联合会紧张的游说之后,司法部说该法会延迟施行以便修改指导条例。

On March 30th the ministry said the law would finally come into effect on July 1st and issued a revised set of guidelines. These clarify some of the things that were worrying bosses. To the relief of football clubs, swanky nightclubs and Formula 1, taking clients on company-sponsored jollies seems unlikely to cause any problems. The question of how responsible British firms are for the misbehaviour of contractors in other countries has been clarified.

在3月30日司法部说该法最终将在7月1日生效,并发布了修改后的指导条例。这些阐明了一些正困扰着老板们的麻烦事。为了救济足球俱乐部,骄傲的夜总会和F1方程式赛车,让顾客参加公司赞助的娱乐活动似乎不会引起任何麻烦。英国公司为合约商的失误应付多大责任的问题也得到了解答。

On the other hand, “facilitation payments”, a euphemistic term for the small bungs sometimes paid to foreign officials to expedite a legitimate service—a licence application, for instance—are discouraged. America’s Foreign Corrupt Practices Act, one of the inspirations for the new law, allows them.

另一方面,“便利费”不受鼓励,实际上这只是有时支付给外国官员以加速合法业务如许可证申请的小额回扣。而让英国的该新法受启发的美国外国腐败行为法案却允许此类行为。

Lawyers are still pondering precisely how much legal force these guidelines will have. One particularly thorny question is whether foreign firms that are listed on British stockmarkets but conduct little other business in the country will be covered. The government has offered no opinion; the question might one day make for a fascinating court case.

律师们仍在深思这些指导条例会有多大的法律效力。一个特别棘手的问题是该法律对那些参与英国股票市场但是几乎没有在英国开展其他业务的外国公司是否有法律效力。政府没有给出选项,或许有一天这会诉诸司法并引起广泛关注。

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重点单词
  • conductn. 行为,举动,品行 v. 引导,指挥,管理 vt.
  • reliefn. 减轻,解除,救济(品), 安慰,浮雕,对比 adj
  • probityn. 诚实,廉洁,正直
  • formulan. 公式,配方,规则;代乳品 adj. (赛车的)级的
  • liberaladj. 慷慨的,大方的,自由主义的 n. 自由主义者,
  • applicationn. 应用; 申请; 专心 n. 应用软件程序
  • assumptionn. 假定,设想,担任(职责等), 假装
  • fascinatingadj. 迷人的
  • reactionn. 反应,反作用力,化学反应
  • decisionn. 决定,决策