Asters, a leading Ukrainian law firm, is implementing an important project to assist foreign companies operating in Ukraine to bring their activities in compliance with the US Foreign Corrupt Practices Act ("FCPA") and the newly adopted UK Bribery Act (the "Bribery Act").
The Bribery Act, as well as the FCPA (jointly, the "Acts"), provide that paying a bribe to a foreign public official is prohibited, no matter where it occurs. Receiving bribes is also prohibited by the Bribery Act, as is commercial bribery involving employees of private companies. The Acts cover activities outside of the United States and the United Kingdom, including those in Ukraine. In addition, multi-national companies doing business in Ukraine expect their business partners to be knowledgeable about and comply with these international standards or else they may be held liable under the Acts.
Given these requirements, boards of directors and management are well advised to ensure their companies' conformity with "adequate procedures" and effective compliance. Failure to comply with the Acts can expose individuals to prison sentences, and companies can be subject to substantial fines, very significant defense costs, civil litigation, and public scrutiny.
In the scope of the project, Asters will hold an Internet survey among foreign companies operating in Ukraine to define the current situation with their compliance with the Acts. The survey will be finalized by 2 December 2011. Companies in the Ukraine are kindly invited to participate in the survey following the link.
Following the completion of the survey, Asters, together with Keith Korenchuk, a highly experienced compliance lawyer from the international law firm of Arnold & Porter LLP, plans to conduct a training program for participants of the survey to analyze the overall situation with the Acts in Ukraine and to present the best practices guides on compliance. Interested companies may be able to develop, assisted by Asters and Arnold & Porter, strategies using best practices to bring their activities in full and secure compliance with the Acts. Please note, participation in the survey and potential subsequent compliance training sessions does not constitute an attorney client relationship.
The Asters team working on this project includes Mr. Vadym Samoilenko, partner, and Mr. Yaroslav Petrov, associate; along with Mr. Keith Korenchuk of Arnold & Porter.
The European Business Association and the American Chamber of Commerce are media partners of the project.