French Anti-Corruption Agency Publishes Guidelines, Part I

On December 22, 2017 the new French Anti-Corruption Agency (created as a result of the "Sapin II Law") published the final form of its anti-corruption recommendations.  The AFA is tasked with developing recommendations designed to help public and private entities within France to prevent and detect acts of corruption. 

The recommendations take into consideration best practices found within international standards, are non-binding, and are applicable throughout the French Republic.  While they are non-binding it is expected that the recommendations will be considered as part of any enforcement activity.  Any company that has a legal entity in France should be familiar with the Sapin II Law and with these recommendations. 

The recommendations affect:

  • All companies, including subsidiaries of foreign companies, when the subsidiaries are established in the territory of the French Republic
  • All of the following legal entities, regardless of the place of their activities, including abroad:
    • Public limited companies, simplified joint-stock companies, limited liability companies, professional civil companies
  • All legal entities "under private or public law, regardless of their size, social form, sector of activity, turnover or the size of their workforce."     
  • All non-corporate entities 

The recommendations are intended to help:

  • Organization's adopt operating rules to enhance their competitiveness
  • Protect organizations from damage to their reputation
  • Companies subject to article 17 of the 2016 Sapin II law fulfill their obligations
  • Guard against penalties that may be imposed by foreign authorities for failing to prevent or detect corruption

Key sections of the recommendations include:

  • Leadership commitment
  • Code of Conduct
  • Internal Warning System
  • Risk Mapping
  • Third-Party Evaluation
  • Accounting controls
  • Training system
  • Internal control and evaluation system

In the coming days, GCSG will post additional articles that discuss in more detail each of the key sections mentioned above. 

Contact GCSG professionals at: with any questions or for more information on how we can assist you with your compliance program.   


Corruption is defined (in the recommendations) "as the act by which a person in a particular public or private office solicits/proposes or agrees/assigns, a gift, an offer or a promise, with a view to accomplishing, delaying or omitting to 'perform an act coming in, directly or indirectly, in the course of his duties."

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