The recent scandals of Lava Jato and Panama Papers have brought up the debate about corporate corruption. But it can be much more present in the day-to-day life of companies than imagined, including in the front line of service provision. Called silent corruption, this practice is not directly linked to the diversion of money, but to a complex and difficult to identify and punish behavior. The concept was created in 2010 by the World Bank to describe the situation in African countries, where public officials did not fulfill their duties and small flaws in conduct caused major impacts on development. “The most serious thing about silent corruption is that it has no immediate impact, it is long-term”, warns economist Jorge Arbache, a professor at the University of Brasília (UnB) and one of the scholars who formulated the concept.
Judge Sérgio Moro ratified, on Thursday, the winning plea from construction company Andrade Gutierrez under Operation LavaJato.
In addition to formalizing the contractor's collaboration in the investigations, the agreement provides for the return of R $ 1 billion to public coffers. The amounts will be refunded in just over eight years.
SAO PAULO and BRASÍLIA - The changes made to the provisional measure of leniency agreements before their publication, revealed this Sunday by GLOBO, show that the federal government had the objective of "making life easier for contractors" involved in corruption schemes. The opinion is from one of the members of the Lava-Jato task force, attorney Carlos Fernando Lima, for whom Brazil “pretends to punish” those who break the law. Two points were removed: the one that dealt with full damage repair and the one that provided for the removal of officers for up to five years.
GENEVA - From the outside, corruption in Brazil remains on the rise. The country's position in an international index of perception of corruption in the public sector has suffered the greatest deterioration in the last 12 months, together with that of Lesotho. The “Corruption Perception Index 2015”, organized by Transparency International (TI), lists countries based on a scale of zero (highly corrupt) to 100 (very transparent).
In the report, Brazil receives 38 points, five less than in the previous year, loses seven positions in the classification and
now it drops to 76th place among 168 countries. “It is not surprising that the perception of Brazil has deteriorated since
the scandals of the monthly allowance, the construction of stadiums and the investigation of Operation LavaJato,
that the world
can see how the existence of a corruption network including politicians from different parties, civil servants
Petrobras, many entrepreneurs and owners of large construction companies, ”said Alejandro Salas, regional director for
Research carried out with 13 thousand entrepreneurs shows that 60% of them pointed out the “failure of governance” as the greatest risk for business in the country
The biggest obstacle to doing business in Brazil this year is the failure of the country's governance. The alert is from the World Economic Forum, which next Wednesday starts its annual event at the ski resort of Davos, Switzerland. In a report published on Thursday, about the biggest global risks for the year, the entity pointed to the Brazilian political crisis and corruption.
In a survey of 13.000 entrepreneurs, 60% of them indicated the “failure of governance” as the greatest risk for doing business in Brazil today. The rate outweighs those who consider the lack of water or infrastructure to be the biggest problems.
In the rest of the world, however, the issue of bankruptcy in public administration appears only as the fourth highest risk and is pointed out as a problem for only 27% of the 13.000 respondents. The biggest global risks, according to Davos, would be immigration and climate change in 2016.
After reading the opinion, the commission will hold a public hearing on the proposal
The special commission that analyzes the bill (PL 3636/15) on leniency agreement today (9), at 12 noon, marked the reading of the opinion of the rapporteur, deputy Andre Moura (PSC-SE).
The leniency agreement is similar to the awarded plea, except that it is entered into by companies with the objective of guaranteeing exemption or mitigation of the respective sanctions, provided that they effectively collaborate with the investigations and the administrative process.
The project allows the Public Prosecutor's Office and the Public Attorney's Office to sign a leniency agreement, either alone or together. The text also provides for the participation of the Public Ministry, from the beginning, in leniency agreements signed by public bodies with companies responsible for acts of corruption.
The rapporteur André Moura is in favor of the leniency agreement for companies. He points out that companies are under the obligation to comply with penalties, but the agreement allows them to continue operating in the market, without jeopardizing the employment of workers.
“Today, in Brazil, there are more than 3 thousand unemployed people, on average, per day. The leniency agreement exactly allows these companies not to suffer the sanctions and penalties prescribed by law, including Law 8.666, of the Bidding, which prevents them from agreeing, contracting with the government, whether municipal, state or federal, and make these companies have to fire and go through greater difficulties ”.
After analyzing the opinion, the commission will hold a public hearing on the proposal with Fernando Luiz Albuquerque Farias, Attorney General of the Substitute Union (representing Minister Luís Inácio Adams); with the Public Prosecutor Roberto Livianu; the Minister of the Federal Court of Auditors Benjamin Zymler; and the former Minister of the Superior Court of Justice, Gilson Dipp.
The debate was suggested by deputies Raul Jungmann (PPS-PE) and Roberto Freire (PPS-SP).
The constant corruption scandals that have been reported in Brazil lately can make many people think that crime is winning the war against ethics. But greater disclosure may in fact represent the opposite: the real confrontation of this problem that corrodes the nation. This is the thesis that prevails in the book The Siege of Corruptors - The History and Challenges of the New Law that Punishes Companies for Illegal and Unethical Practices, written by journalist Oscar Pilagallo from a seminar held by ETCO-Brazilian Institute of Ethics in Competition in partnership with the newspaper Economic value.
The seminar, held in 2014, was one of the first events in the country to discuss the effects of the so-called Anti-Corruption Law, which came into force earlier that year. The new law increased the punishment of companies involved in corruption cases and encouraged the adoption of integrity programs to prevent this evil. The ETCO and Value brought together lawyers, compliance professionals and other experts on the subject, in addition to authorities such as the then Chief Minister of the Comptroller General of the Union, Jorge Hage.
Getting used to corruption
The book summarizes the main themes discussed at the event, such as the objective and joint responsibility of companies, the rules of leniency agreements and the principles that should guide a compliance program. In addition to the content of the seminar, Pilagallo incorporated the new regulations of the Anti-Corruption Law that occurred in 2015 into the work.
At the opening of the book, ETCO President Evandro Guimarães talks about the moment Brazil is going through. “The greatest risk for a nation is not corruption itself. Corruption exists even in the most advanced countries. The greatest danger is that people will get used to it, stop trusting institutions and lose their capacity for indignation. Or worse: to believe that corruption is part of the culture and to begin, themselves, to commit illegal acts in exchange for undue advantages without guilt or remorse. Such a country is doomed to ethical, moral and economic decay. Fortunately, the signs are that Brazil has chosen another path ”, wrote Evandro.
This is the fifth book that Oscar Pilagallo writes for ETCO. The others were Competition Ethics - Reflection, Analysis and Perspectives; Corruption - Barriers to Development in Brazil; Law and Economics; is Market Tax.
O Siege of Corruptors it was launched by the publisher Elsevier-Campus, has 130 pages and costs R $ 45. The book can be purchased through the website www.elsevier.com.br.
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