NZEC does not guarantee transactions where bribery is involved. The guarantee-holder could find that the guarantee ceases to be valid if it later emerges that the export transaction involved bribery.
NZEC requires everyone who applies for a guarantee to verify that no bribes have been paid in connection with the transaction in question. NZEC's guarantee will cease to be valid should it later emerge that bribes have been paid.
NZEC requires the exporter to certify this when the exporter applies for the guarantee. In addition NZEC informs the parties involved about the consequences of breaking the law against bribery.
When you apply for a guarantee you have to certify that:
- the applicant has not paid and will not pay bribes or other unacceptable rewards to foreign ministers, members of parliament or public officials in connection with the export transaction to which the application relates;
- no other person who is acting on behalf of the applicant has paid or will pay bribes or other unacceptable rewards to foreign ministers, members of parliament or public officials in connection with the export transaction to which the application relates.
- the exporter applying is aware that NZEC's obligation to honour the NZEC guarantee may cease and that any indemnification already paid may have to be refunded if the export transaction turns out to have involved bribery.
NZEC's policy and procedures against corruption have been harmonised with those of other export credit agencies within the OECD.
NZEC supports initiatives that encourage the combating of bribery in international business transactions such as the OECD Action Statement on Bribery and Officially Supported Export Credits. Furthermore, NZEC must operate in a manner consistent with OECD recommendations. relating to officially supported export credits, including any guidelines developed by OECD from time to time in relation to bribery and corruption.
In supporting any export credit transaction, NZEC will take measures and adopt policies and procedures that deter bribery. These measures will include the following:
- The applicant for an export credit guarantee and/or the relevant exporter will be required to provide to NZEC an undertaking or declaration that neither they, nor anyone acting on their behalf, have been engaged, or will engage, in any corrupt conduct including bribery while conducting that transaction.
- The applicant and other parties receiving or benefiting from the support of NZEC will be primarily responsible on an on-going basis for the proper description of the international business transaction and the transparency of all relevant payments.
- The applicant will at all times be responsible for compliance with all applicable laws and regulations, including national provisions for combating bribery of foreign and domestic public officials, and bribery in the private sector.
- If there is credible evidence of bribery in the award of the export contract, NZEC will refuse to approve credit, cover or other support.
- If after credit, cover or other support has been approved and an involvement in bribery by the applicant or other beneficiary is proved, NZEC will take whatever action it deems appropriate including the denial of payment or indemnification, seeking repayment of sums paid out and/or referral of evidence of such bribery to the appropriate authorities both in New Zealand and in any other relevant jurisdiction.
For further information on the New Zealand Government's policies regarding Combating Bribery and Corruption please visit the Ministry of Justice's website at: www.justice.govt.nz/policy/criminal-justice/bribery-and-corruption/legal-framework.
NZEC supports initiatives by New Zealand exporters to have and apply internal policies to combat bribery and corruption. New Zealand exporters are encouraged to:
- Develop and implement appropriate internal control systems that combat bribery and corruption.
- Familiarise appropriate employees and agents with relevant New Zealand and international legislation prohibiting bribery.
- Educate appropriate employees and agents about:
- their responsibilities regarding combating bribery and corruption,
- how to identify bribery and corruption, and
- the actions to take if they encounter bribery and corruption.
- Identify the export markets that present a significant risk of bribery and corruption.
- Establish a reporting system for suspicious behaviour.
- Monitor the actions of agents representing your company.
For further guidance on practical, anti-bribery tools for businesses, visit the Ministry of Justice’s “Saying No to Bribery and Corruption – A Guide for New Zealand Businesses” at https://www.justice.govt.nz/assets/Documents/Publications/Ministry-of-Justice-Anti-Corruption-Guide.pdf
OECD Convention on Combating Bribery of Foreign Public Officials in International Business Transactions
Under the OECD Convention on Combating Bribery of Foreign Public Officials in International Business Transactions (the OECD Anti-Bribery Convention) and its related instruments, governments are obliged to take action to deter and sanction bribery of foreign public officials in international business transactions supported by official export credits.
The actions that Members must take include:
- Provision by the exporter/applicant of a no bribery undertaking is now a prerequisite for obtaining official export credit support.
Members to verify whether the exporter/applicant is listed on the publicly available debarment lists of the Multilateral Financial institutions (e.g. World Bank Group).
Exporters/applicants to disclose whether they or anyone acting on their behalf:
are currently under charge in any court, or to the best of their knowledge, are formally under investigation by public prosecutors for violation of laws against bribery of any country;
within the last five years preceding their application, have been convicted in any court for violations of laws against bribery of any country, been subject to equivalent measures, or been found as part of a publicly-available arbitral award to have been engaged in bribery.
Exporters/applicants must provide the names of persons acting on their behalf in connection with the transaction and details about the amounts and purpose of any commissions/fees paid. The exporter/applicant must also declare that any such commissions or fees will be for legitimate services only.
Members to scrutinise more closely (i.e. apply enhanced due diligence) applications for official export credit involving exporters/applicants that have been debarred by an International Financial Institution, are under charge for bribery, or have been convicted of bribery in the past (e.g. on the basis of negative information obtained in relation to the second and third tiret above).
In the event that an exporter/applicant has been convicted of bribery in the last five years, the Member must verify that internal corrective and preventative measures have been taken before new export credit support could be provided again.
Members must develop and implement disclosure procedures, to disclose to law enforcement authorities, instances of credible evidence. For the purposes of the Action Statement, credible evidence is defined as evidence of a quality which, after critical analysis, a court would find to be reasonable and sufficient grounds upon which to base a decision on the issue if no contrary evidence were submitted.
Members must promptly inform law enforcement authorities if there was credible evidence that bribery was involved in the award of the export contract; previously this was one on the possible actions that could be taken if there was sufficient evidence of bribery.
- Members may not provide support for a transaction if there is credible evidence of bribery or if the enhanced due diligence process concludes that bribery was involved in the award of the export contract.