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US business admits bribery

2009

US telecoms company UTStarcom has paid $3million in fines after admitting to bribing Chinese officials to win business.

The firm was accused of spending around $7m on bribes between 2002 and 2007, including cash gifts and holidays disguised as training trips, given mainly to executives of state-owned telecoms companies that were UTStarcom customers.

The fine is the result of a settlement of an investigation conducted by the US department of Justice and the exchange xommission.

In addition to the fine, the company will be required to install rigorous governance controls and to cooperate with the department of justice.

Bribery has been endemic in China since foreign investment flooded into the country, although a bribe-monitoring project was set up a year ago to help companies combat the practice (EP10, issue 4, p5).



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