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为亚洲公司培养合规文化

September 12, 2017

By Paul Hastings Professional

在问答环节中,普衡合伙人唐海燕,Toshi Arai, Hiro Hagiwara**以及Jong Han Kim**讨论了越来越多的亚洲公司开始制定符合全球标准的合规政策的趋势,并且分析了合规政策受到如此重视的原因。

为什么制定符合全球标准的合规政策对于亚洲公司来说是必要的?

对于亚洲公司来说,制定这一类政策是非常必要的,因为我们希望能够在亚洲公司培养一种合规文化。在欧洲和美国,公司制定合规政策的实践已经持续发展了一段时间。相比之下,在亚洲,合规政策仍然是一个较新并且极具争议的理念。很多亚洲公司扩展业务的传统做法是和政府官员以及机构保持紧密关系,游说及招待公司的客户、债权人以及监管方。很多这样的活动会通过不透明的方式隐秘地进行。鉴于美国和欧洲的监管机构对于这类行为的执法力度日趋加强,以及一些亚洲监管机构对于这类行为正在进行更为严格的审查,亚洲公司将面临更高的刑事责任(以及相关行政和民事责任)的风险。

制定合规政策是为了预防违法行为。合规政策提供了一个什么可以做及什么不可以做的清单,其本质上是一本很厚的指引,也是一个为公司减少风险的预防工具。因为一个真正符合全球标准的合规政策会彻底改变公司管理的方式以及部门架构,所以一个公司需要一到两年来实施该合规政策。一个完善的合规政策将能承受未来可能出现的严格的审查和考验。比如说,如果公司被卷入美国刑事调查,那么一个完善的合规政策必须能够经受住来自美国司法部的严格审查。

成功实施一个合规政策的关键是什么?

制定一个真正有效的合规政策意味着与公司的顶层人士直接沟通,并且要求公司领导在一个尚未发生并且可能永远不会发生的问题上花费一大笔资金。实施一个合规政策涉及大量的员工培训,改变运营系统以及业务方式。公司内部不同部门持不情愿或不接受的态度是预料之中的。

普衡团队曾为多家业界领先的公司提供合规方面的法律服务,为公司的首席执行官和董事长传达通过改变公司文化而为公司运营带来透明度所增添的价值和重要性。尽管他们起初对改变公司现状表示怀疑,但这些公司领导层已经逐渐理解并重视这些改变将为公司带来的价值,尤其是对公司和员工刑事责任风险的规避。

这些合规政策为我们的客户带来了哪些积极的影响?

为公司量身定制一套符合公司文化及全球标准的合规政策将为公司增加重要的价值。该政策不仅能帮助公司避免诉讼及政府调查,而且能让公司有资格享受优惠政策,比如减免政府罚款,从而帮助公司节省数以百万计的开支。

实践证明,在任何合规风险实质性地威胁到公司之前,提前规避该类风险并监测公司内部违法行为可以为公司节省巨额的成本。我们相信,部分亚洲公司会跟上这个潮流,而我们也将在培养亚洲地区公司合规文化的过程中为客户提供帮助。

中国政府的反腐败政策一直备受关注,我们的客户需要对哪些法律法规上的更新有所了解?

中国习近平总书记主导了一场强势的、零容忍的反腐败改革。根据新闻报道,目前中国政府已惩戒逾一百万名政府官员、没收超过十亿美元资产、并引渡了成千上万的在外逃犯。在这样的背景下,为了响应或支持该反腐败改革,我们看到中国的法律法规有如下修订及更新:

  1. 关于办理贪污贿赂刑事案件适用法律若干问题的解释

  • 新的入刑金额起点:

  • 提高了行贿和受贿者的入刑金额起点,以适应当前经济条件的发展;

  • 行贿者和受贿者起刑点相同,反映了当局惩治腐败给付和收受双方的决心;

  • 明确贿赂犯罪中的“财物”也包括某些无形的收益;

  • “为他人谋取利益”也被扩张解释为包括明知他人有具体请托事项的;以及履职时未被请托,但事后基于该履职事由收受他人财物的。

  1. 反不正当竞争法

修订草案于2017年2月26日由全国人大向社会发布征求意见稿

  • 第三方开始受到监管;

  • 默认经营者为员工的商业贿赂行为承担责任;

  • 惩罚措施包括:

  • 收受和给付商业贿赂皆可罚;

  • 刑事和行政处罚双管齐下;

  • 罚款金额上调;

  • 可能被吊销营业执照;

  • 然而,没收违法所得从过去的文本中被删去,可能因为对“违法所得”难以界定。评论员也呼吁重新考虑该处删除,因其可能导致对此类违法行为震慑力度的降低。

  1. 网络安全法

网络安全法于2017年6月1日起正式实施。随后出台的还有《个人信息和重要数据出境安全评估办法(征求意见稿)》(“评估办法”,尚未生效,于2017年4月11日发布征求社会意见

)以及后续的《信息安全技术数据出境安全评估指南(草案)》(“评估指南”),均旨在明确网络安全法的解释和实行。

在网络安全法下:

  • 个人信息跨境传输受到监管;

  • 个人信息出境可能需要个人信息主体的同意(评估办法第4条);

  • 某些情况下可推测出默示的个人同意,比如进行国际电话,向海外个人或组织发送邮件或即时消息,以及进行跨境电子贸易;

  • 信息主体基于评估指南的其他活动。

Cultivating a Culture of Compliance in Asian Firms

In our Q&A, partners Haiyan Tang, Toshi Arai, Hiro Hagiwara and Jong Han Kim discuss the growing number of companies across Asia developing global standard compliance programs—and why these programs are so critical.

Why are global standard compliance programs necessary?

These types of programs are necessary because we want to cultivate a culture of compliance in Asian firms. While compliance programs have been around for a while in Europe and the U.S., they are still a relatively new and highly contentious topic throughout Asia. Many Asian companies have traditionally expanded their business operations by maintaining close ties to government officials and agencies and by lobbying and entertaining their customers, creditors, and regulators. Many of these activities would be conducted in discrete settings through non-transparent means. Due to the increased enforcement of such behavior by U.S. and European regulators and the increasing scrutiny by some Asian regulators, the risk of criminal (and accompanying administrative and civil) exposure to Asian companies has grown.

A compliance program is created to prevent wrongdoing. It lays out a list of what you can and cannot do and is essentially a thick book of guidelines – or a “prevention tool” to reduce risk for a company. A true global standard program takes one to two years to implement as it would completely change the way the operations of the company are managed and the divisions are structured. A properly established program would have to withstand a rigorous scrutiny and test by, for instance, the U.S. Department of Justice in case the company becomes involved in a U.S. criminal investigation.

What are the critical components for successfully implementing a compliance program?

Setting up a true compliance program means going straight to the top of an organization and asking the company’s leadership to spend a large amount of money on something that hasn’t even happened (and may not ever happen). Implementing a compliance program involves heavy employee education, changing systems of operation, and changing how people conduct their business. Reluctance and a lack of acceptance from different departments are to be expected.

We at Paul Hastings have worked directly with the CEOs and chairmen of leading companies to convey the value and importance of changing the corporate culture to bring transparency to corporate operations and conduct. Though reluctant at first to upset the present system, these leaders have come to appreciate the value that such changes would bring, especially the decrease in criminal exposure for their companies and their employees.

What positive impact have these compliance programs had on our clients?

Building tailor-made programs that fit a particular firm’s culture while meeting global standards has added significant value and could potentially help clients save millions of dollars by not only avoiding lawsuits and government investigations, but also becoming eligible for potential benefits, such as government-imposed fine reductions.

The cost-savings potential for companies has proven to be enormous by helping avoid the risks and detecting wrong-doings long before their implications kick in. We are optimistic that a wave of other Asian firms will follow, and accordingly that we will have had a hand in cultivating a corporate culture of compliance across the region.

Turning to China, where the government’s anti-corruption efforts continue to be in the spotlight, are there significant recent changes in laws or regulations that our client should be aware of?

Chinese President Xi Jinping has led an aggressive, zero-tolerance anti-corruption campaign. According to news reports, the campaign has successfully punished more than one million officials, seized more than US$1 billion in assets, and extradited thousands of fugitives. Against this backdrop, the following legislative changes in Chinese rules and regulations can be observed in response to or in support of the campaign:

  1. Judicial Interpretation on the Application of Law in Anti-Corruption and Anti-Bribery Criminal Cases

  • New monetary thresholds for criminal sentencing standards:

  • Increased for both briber and bribee to match current economy status;

  • Same thresholds for both briber and bribee to show the administration’s determination to punish wrongdoers on both sides.

  • Definition of “things of value” clarified to include certain intangible benefits.

  • Definition of “seeking illegal benefits for others” expanded to include 1) when bribee is aware that there is a specific request; and 2) when the bribee has no knowledge of a specific request during performance, but receives payments afterwards by virtue of the performance.

  1. Anti-Unfair Competition Law

The draft amendment was issued by the People’s Congress to seek comments on February 26, 2017

.

  • Third parties come under scrutiny.

  • Business operators assume vicarious liability for acts of employees.

  • Penalties include:

  • Both accepting and offering a bribe are punishable;

  • Criminal and administrative penalties can come in parallel;

  • Value of fine is increased;

  • Revocation of business license is possible;

  • However, forfeiture of illegal gains has been removed, potentially because it is difficult to determine “illegal gains.” Commentators are calling for the reconsideration of this removal because this might lower the deterrence against misconduct.

  • Cyber-Security Law (CSL)

The CSL went into effect on June 1, 2017, and is to be followed by the Security Assessment Measures regarding the Exit of Border of Personal Information and Important Data (“Draft Measures,” not yet effective, issued on April 11, 2017 for public comment)

and the Amendments on the Draft Measures (“Amendments”). Both are intended to clarify the interpretation and implementation of the CSL.

Under the CSL:

  • Cross-border transfer of personal information is regulated;

  • Consent by owner of the personal information may be required for out-of-China data transmission (Article 4 of the Draft Measures);

  • Consent may be inferred under certain circumstances, such as making international phone calls, sending emails or instant messages to individuals or organizations overseas, and making cross-border e-commerce transactions;

  • Other activities initiated by data subjects based on the Amendments.


脚注:

关于办理贪污贿赂刑事案件适用法律若干问题的解释,由最高人民法院以及最高人民检察院于2016年4月18日发布。

中国知识产权,2017年2月2日,

美国信息产业机构,

Judicial Interpretation on the Application of Law in Anti-Corruption and Anti-Bribery Criminal Cases, issued by the Supreme People’s Court and Supreme People’s Procuraterate on April 18, 2016.

China IPR, February 2, 2017, .

USITO,

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