With the world economy significantly affected by the COVID-19 pandemic, many companies are struggling to survive and facing an acute need to retain existing business and obtain new business. This puts pressure on their business and marketing teams. As a result, proper management of the anti-corruption risks associated with business hospitality is even more important to avoid possible breach of applicable anti-bribery laws such as the US Foreign Corrupt Practices Act (FCPA).
Business hospitality, including gifts, meals, entertainment, transportation, lodging and per diems, that legitimately promotes cordial business relations or demonstrates a company’s products or services is a normal part of business relationships across the globe. However, business hospitality that improperly influences the behavior of the recipient to obtain or retain business advantages may result in actual or perceived anti-corruption violations, causing economic as well as reputational damage to the company. So, what are the things to look at when reviewing business hospitality expenses? This blogpost provides some practical advice to in-house legal and compliance professionals on the review and approval of business hospitality expenses.