Butler Library

Export Control and other Regulations

International Research/Export Control

Export Control and other Regulations

Foreign Corrupt Practices Act

U.S. law also contains provisions related to anti-corruption, including rules for handling of transactions and rules related to keeping of accounts and records. For example, the FCPA makes it unlawful to offer something of value to foreign government officials in order to obtain or retain business, direct business to a particular party or otherwise obtain an unfair advantage. The business to be obtained or retained need not be with a foreign government or foreign government instrumentality, but may be private.

Columbia personnel may not offer or make payments to a foreign official with the intent of:

  • influencing the individual’s acts or decisions;
  • inducing the individual to violate his or her lawful duty;
  • obtaining any improper advantage; or
  • inducing the foreign official to use his or her influence improperly.

The prohibited payments need not only be monetary, but may consist of anything of value (including, for example, meals or other gifts).

A “Resource Guide to the FCPA” is available on the Department of Justice website. If you have questions about the FCPA, and particularly about whether a payment falls within the exception, you should consult with Columbia's Office of General Counsel.