Anti-corruption regulation—Japan—Q&A guide

The following Corporate Crime practice note provides comprehensive and up to date legal information covering:

  • Anti-corruption regulation—Japan—Q&A guide
  • 1. To which international anti-corruption conventions is your country a signatory?
  • 2. Identify and describe your national laws and regulations prohibiting bribery of foreign public officials (foreign bribery laws) and domestic public officials (domestic bribery laws).
  • 3. Can a successor entity be held liable for violations of foreign and domestic bribery laws by the target entity that occurred prior to the merger or acquisition?
  • 4. Is there civil and criminal enforcement of your country’s foreign and domestic bribery laws?
  • 5. Can enforcement matters involving foreign or domestic bribery be resolved through plea agreements, settlement agreements, prosecutorial discretion or similar means without a trial? Is there a mechanism for companies to disclose violations of domestic and foreign bribery laws in exchange for lesser penalties?
  • 6. Describe the elements of the law prohibiting bribery of a foreign public official.
  • 7. How does your law define a foreign public official, and does that definition include employees of state-owned or state-controlled companies?
  • 8. To what extent do your anti-bribery laws restrict providing foreign officials with gifts, travel expenses, meals or entertainment?
  • 9. Do the laws and regulations permit facilitating or ‘grease’ payments to foreign officials?
  • More...

Anti-corruption regulation—Japan—Q&A guide

This Practice Note contains a jurisdiction-specific Q&A guide to anti-corruption regulation in Japan published as part of the Lexology Getting the Deal Through series by Law Business Research (published: January 2021).

Authors: Anderson Mōri & Tomotsune—Yoshihiro Kai

1. To which international anti-corruption conventions is your country a signatory?

Japan is a signatory to the Organisation for Economic Co-operation and Development's (OECD) Convention on Combating Bribery of Foreign Public Officials in International Business Transactions (the OECD Convention). This was signed on 17 December 1997 and ratified by Japan on 13 October 1998. Based on this, the Unfair Competition Prevention Act (Act No. 47 of 19 May 1993) (UCPA) was amended in 1998 to criminalise the bribery of foreign public officials.

Japan is also a signatory to the United Nations Convention against Transnational Organized Crime, which was signed in December 2000 and ratified on 14 May 2003, and the United Nations Convention against Corruption, which was signed on 9 December 2003 and ratified on 2 June 2006.

2. Identify and describe your national laws and regulations prohibiting bribery of foreign public officials (foreign bribery laws) and domestic public officials (domestic bribery laws).

Bribery of foreign public officials is criminally punishable under the UCPA. Violators may be imprisoned for up to five years or fined up to ¥5 million (article 21, paragraph 2 of the UCPA).

Bribery of domestic public officials is

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