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Internationl Business Law - Essay Example

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The case of Securities Exchange Commission vs. Siemens Aktiengesellschaft involves the silently accepted policy of the Managing Board of the company also known as the Vorstand to bribe foreign officials to be able to obtain business in various countries. Some of these transactions include a construction of a metro trains, transmission lines and signal devices in China, another metro transit in Venezuela, contracts in communication upgrade in Bangladesh, Nigeria and Vietnam, medical devices in Russia, Vietnam and Russia, and power related projects in Israel and another in Iraq which is under a United Nations Oil-for-Food Program…
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Download file to see previous pages Millions of dollars were also spent to pay up third parties that implicated embezzlement. It was found that there is an atmosphere of tolerance and even the company’s cultural acceptance of the practice in all levels of the corporation. There has been a systematic implementation of this scheme that engaged the members of the organization (ibid). There was a failure by the internal safeguards of Siemens to clean up their business adequately in time prior to the case filed by the SEC to their disadvantage. The main issue encompass the acts of the company in violation of the Foreign Corrupt Practices Act of 1977 (FCPA) under the United States federal law which punishes bribery of foreign officials. This is in relation to the thrust of the Securities and Exchange Commission to regulate businesses under its jurisdiction. Specifically, the provisions of Sections 30A, 13(b)(2)(A), and 13(b)(2)(B) of the Exchange Act were violated (ibid). The court found in favor of the SEC and granted the highest settlement in this particular area where Siemens has offered $1.6 billion in payment for the fines and disgorgement provided under the law. Out of which, $350 million will go to the SEC in disgorgement, $450 million in criminal fine to the Department of Justice, about $569 million as fine to Germany’s Office of the Prosecutor General in Munich. This is apart from the approximately $285 million Siemens has already paid in 2007 to the Prosecutor previously mentioned (ibid). In the end, the SEC and the State together with the German government won this case through an amicable settlement by the plaintiff and defendant. This is a good manifestation of the gravity of the battle against foreign bribery as a matter of policy showing the best possible sign of its effectiveness. This was an ideal scenario where the company has offered on its own a significant sum to rectify its deeds. The willingness of the Siemens to settle, granted that $1.6 billion is already a sizable sum, brings to question the actual extent of the profit that they may have acquired through these dubious dealings. Further raising doubts is the fact that there are many countries involved in the transactions investigated by the SEC. Upon scrutiny of this case and the outcome, it is immediately apparent that the United States and Germany got the best end of the bargain. It must be noted that there are a number of other countries who suffered with most of them developing countries. It brings to mind the question of what the others will get out of this case and will they benefit from Siemens’ mea culpa. 1. How do the Siemens’ penalties relate to the caps on fines discussed earlier in this chapter? Fines are a form of sanction on companies to deter them from committing offenses and grave abuses to the expense of others. The penalty imposed upon Siemens is a glaring example for others not to follow suit on the ill practices that they have previously engendered as a company culture. The likelihood of a significant fine that ...Download file to see next pagesRead More
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