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Canada gets failing grade for lax enforcement of anti-bribery laws

File photo of a judge's gavel. GETTY IMAGES/Joe Raedle

Canada has been singled out as the only country in the G7 that’s failing to enforce anti-bribery rules against its businesses operating abroad.

For the seventh year in a row, Transparency International has ranked Canada as having “little or no enforcement,” despite Canada’s signature on an OECD Anti-Bribery Convention.

Canada is by far the largest exporter among the 21 countries listed by Transparency International as failing to live up to their convention promises.

The watchdog group ranks Canada with other laggards such as Bulgaria, Estonia, Greece and Slovenia, but also Australia, New Zealand and Israel.

Transparency International’s seventh annual report laments a lack of overall movement among the 38 signatories to the anti-bribery convention a decade after it was adopted and points the finger at a lack of political will from the top in countries such as Canada.

Canada has had only a single bribery conviction in the last decade, but the report notes that 23 investigations were started last year — prompting hope that Canada may start showing real enforcement teeth.