Under the Organic Act on Counter-Corruption, B.E. 2561 (2018), companies operating in Thailand must put in place “appropriate internal control measures” that comply with the National Anti-Corruption Commission’s (NACC) guidelines. (Click this link to see our previous alert on the official guidelines.) Failure to do so carries a penalty of a fine from one to two times the value of the damage caused, or benefits gained, as a result of the violation.
A frequently asked question is what the benefits are for a company that has the appropriate internal control measures. The NACC’s answer is that the measures are a tool to protect the company and its directors and connected persons from being implicated in a bribery case, which would otherwise affect the company’s goodwill, image, and business operations. This helps reduce unnecessary costs and expenses arising from bribery, and also creates a level playing field for all business operators.
Companies should further explore whether their internal control measures comply with the eight fundamental elements under the NACC’s guidelines, which are:
- Strong, visible policies and support from top-level management to prevent bribery.
- Risk assessment to effectively identify and evaluate exposure to bribery.
- Enhanced and detailed measures for high-risk and vulnerable areas.
- Application of anti-bribery measures to business partners.
- Accurate books and accounting records.
- Human resource management policies complementary to anti-bribery measures.
- Communication mechanisms that encourage the reporting of suspicion of bribery.
- Periodic review and evaluation of anti-bribery prevention measures and their effectiveness.
In the following articles in this series, we will examine the principle of each fundamental element, as explained by the NACC.