A new survey conducted by TRACE International, a non-profit business association that pools resources to provide its members with anti-bribery compliance support has revealed that businesses in Ghana are increasingly being exposed to bribery.
Scoring a high level index of 68 points, the survey pointed out that bribery risks to doing business in Ghana is widespread and inimical to the growth of the private sector.
The survey looked at four main areas which were Business Interactions with Government, Ant-bribery Laws and Enforcement, Government and Civil Service Transparency; and Capacity for Civil Society Oversight.
On Business Interactions with Government, Ghana scored 70 points, indicating a high risk of incentive for bribery in government-private interactions due to regulatory burden.
Also on Government and Civil Service Transparency, the country did not perform well–scoring 71 percent which shows a low quality administration and governmental transparency.
However, on Anti-Bribery Laws and Enforcement, and Capacity for Civil Society Oversight, Ghana performed well by scoring 20 and 37 points respectively– indicating a strong application of the laws against persons engaged in bribery cases.
According to the researchers, the four main domain scores were weighted and combined with risk penalty added for individual domain scores that exceeded the overall country risk score.
“Each country that took part in the survey is given a score from one to 100 for each domain, and for the total bribery risk; a higher score indicates a higher risk of business bribery” Founder and President of TRACE International, Alexandra Wrage explained.
The survey was sponsored by USAID and PYXERA Global was launched in Accra.
In a speech read on her behalf, the Chief Justice, Mrs. Georgina Theodora Wood noted that the fight against bribery is a significant piece needed to improve integrity in the market place to make States desirable destinations for sustainable businesses that contribute effectively to national growth.
She stated that Ghana has invested extensively in institutions and legislation targeted at controlling every form of criminal activity that affects commercial transparency, including bribery, money laundering, procurement fraud and fraud in other commercial transactions.
“Institutions such as the Serious Fraud Office, Economic and Organized Crime Office, and the Financial Intelligence Center have been given oversight mandate to ensure integrity and transparency in aspects of financial and commercial activity such as commercial fraud, money laundering and terrorist financing”, she said.
She maintained that there is still room for improvement even though much effort has been engaged to ensure institutional and regulatory support for confidence and transparency in commercial activity within the jurisdiction.
About TRACE International
TRACE International was founded in 2001 by in-house anti-bribery compliance experts to achieve economies of scale and set a common standard for two shared elements of anti-bribery compliance programs: due diligence reviews of commercial intermediaries and anti-bribery training for the global supply chain.
TRACE International is a 501c(6) non-profit business association funded by its members; it leverages a shared-cost model to provide practical and cost-effective anti-bribery compliance services for multinational companies and their commercial intermediaries through a membership program.
TRACE International does not seek or accept any funding from any government.
About Founder, Alexandra Wrage
Alexandra Wrage is president and founder of TRACE. She is the author of Bribery and Extortion: Undermining Business, Governments and Security, co-editor of How to Pay a Bribe: Thinking Like a Criminal to Thwart Bribery Schemes and the host of the training DVD Toxic Transactions: Bribery, Extortion and the High Price of Bad Business, produced by NBC.
Ms. Wrage has written three compliance guidebooks and is a guest blogger for Corporate Counsel.
She speaks frequently on topics of international law, anti-corruption initiatives and the hidden costs of corruption.
Ms. Wrage is a former member of FIFA’s Independent Governance Committee and served on the 2015 B20 Taskforce on Anti-Corruption, which drafted recommendations to G20 leaders for consideration in their global economic policies.
She has held numerous committee positions, including Chair of the Anti-Corruption Committee of the ABA’s International Section and Chair of the International Legal Affairs Committee of the Association of Corporate Counsel, and has participated in anti-bribery working groups with the OECD and UN Global Compact.
Ms. Wrage was named one of the “Canadians Changing the World” by the Toronto Globe & Mail and received the 2014 Women in Compliance “Lifetime Achievement Award for Service to the Compliance Industry.” Prior to founding TRACE, Ms. Wrage was international counsel at Northrop Grumman. Ms. Wrage, a Canadian, studied law at King’s College, Cambridge University.