Foreign Corrupt Practices Act of 1977 (FCPA)

The Foreign Corrupt Practices Act (FCPA) is a U.S. law that prohibits companies from gaining business or any improper competitive advantage through bribes paid to foreign officials. Passed by Congress in 1977, the FCPA's enactment made the United States the first industrial nation to criminalize transnational bribery. Congress further amended the law in 1988 and 1998.

The FCPA applies to companies organized under U.S. law, as well as foreign companies that issue securities within the United States. These organizations and their agents may be held liable under the FCPA for acts performed either within or outside U.S. borders. A 1998 amendment also extends the law's reach to include citizens of other countries who support or engage in foreign bribery while physically present within the United States.

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