Gifts and hospitality in business dealings can be actual or perceived bribes.
If a gift or hospitality is genuinely given and received without any intention by the parties that it will influence the recipient to act improperly, then the gift or hospitality will not be a bribe. However, if the intention of the giver or receiver is that the gift or hospitality will influence the receiver to act improperly, then it will be a bribe.
In business dealings, there is a risk that, even if givers and receivers of gifts or hospitality are not intending to act corruptly, a third party (such as the media, a prosecutor, or a judge) may perceive the gift or hospitality to be corrupt because they can see no other plausible reason for the gift or hospitality. The likelihood of a gift or hospitality being perceived to be corrupt depends on a combination of factors, such as the value of the gift or hospitality and the circumstances in which it is given.
Avoiding corrupt gifts and hospitality
Always be very cautious in giving or accepting gifts or hospitality to or from someone with whom you are, or have been, or may be, in a business relationship. Before doing so, ensure that the gift or hospitality is not, and could not reasonably be perceived to be, intended either to influence the recipient to act improperly or to be a reward for acting improperly. If in doubt, do not offer or accept the gift or hospitality.
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1st February 2024