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Book part
Publication date: 21 July 2011

Jon S.T. Quah

In late April 1973, Charles P. Sutcliffe, the Commissioner of the Royal Hong Kong Police Force (RHKPF), received confidential information that Chief Superintendent Peter…

Abstract

In late April 1973, Charles P. Sutcliffe, the Commissioner of the Royal Hong Kong Police Force (RHKPF), received confidential information that Chief Superintendent Peter F. Godber, Deputy District Police Commander for Kowloon, was remitting money abroad. This information was transmitted to James J. E. Morrin, the Director of the Anti-Corruption Office (ACO), for investigation. By the end of May 1973, investigations by the ACO officers revealed that Godber had deposited in Hong Kong banks or remitted overseas HK$650,000 (US$128,332) since 1968 (Blair-Kerr, 1973a, pp. 3–4).

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Curbing Corruption in Asian Countries: An Impossible Dream?
Type: Book
ISBN: 978-0-85724-819-0

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Book part
Publication date: 26 November 2013

Ian Scott

The implicit assumption underlying the work of most anti-corruption agencies (ACAs) is that they need to change public attitudes toward corruption to ensure a cleaner…

Abstract

The implicit assumption underlying the work of most anti-corruption agencies (ACAs) is that they need to change public attitudes toward corruption to ensure a cleaner future. The means of achieving this objective usually rest on sanctions, prevention, and sermons. Changing attitudes is seen to be largely a matter of prosecuting the corrupt, putting preventive measures in place, emphasizing the negative social and criminal consequences of corruption, and exhorting the public to achieve higher moral standards. Engaging the public is rarely undertaken directly. If it were, it would entail a community relations approach based on face-to-face, decentralized interaction between the ACA and the public. In principle, this approach might have three significant advantages. First, it could enable the anti-corruption message to be communicated more directly and, possibly, more effectively. Second, it might assist the ACA in identifying groups within the community which have developed, or are developing, attitudes which are potentially antithetical to its objectives. Third, it could serve as a springboard for local anti-corruption initiatives which might help to embed desired practices in the community or groups within it. In this chapter, we examine the extent to which one of the few agencies to adopt a full-blown community relations strategy – Hong Kong’s Independent Commission Against Corruption (ICAC) – has been able to achieve those benefits.

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Different Paths to Curbing Corruption
Type: Book
ISBN: 978-1-78190-731-3

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Article
Publication date: 10 July 2017

Ian Scott

The purpose of this paper is to examine the factors explaining the success of Hong Kong’s Independent Commission Against Corruption (ICAC) and the challenges which it…

Abstract

Purpose

The purpose of this paper is to examine the factors explaining the success of Hong Kong’s Independent Commission Against Corruption (ICAC) and the challenges which it faces in maintaining that success.

Design/methodology/approach

Utilising a review of primary and secondary sources, a syndrome of success characteristics is developed and analysed against a backdrop of recent high-level scandals involving corruption and unethical behaviour.

Findings

The paper concludes that the institutionalisation of key structures and processes has enabled the ICAC to perform successfully to date but that the prospect of political interference may represent a significant future challenge.

Originality/value

Although there has been widespread attention to ICAC success factors, some important features have been neglected and little academic attention has been devoted to recent political challenges to its position.

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Asian Education and Development Studies, vol. 6 no. 3
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 2046-3162

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Article
Publication date: 5 January 2015

Bryane Michael

– The purpose of this article is to assess the extent to which Hong Kong’s laws deter its companies from engaging in corruption and bribery abroad.

Abstract

Purpose

The purpose of this article is to assess the extent to which Hong Kong’s laws deter its companies from engaging in corruption and bribery abroad.

Design/methodology/approach

A mix of economics, public administration, management and legal analysis was used to assess weaknesses in Hong Kong’s laws governing the prohibition of bribe payments abroad.

Findings

Hong Kong does not explicitly criminalise corporate bribery abroad. Companies – as legal persons – can not be found guilty of corruption. It is argued that Hong Kong’s Legislative Council should amend various laws to modernise Hong Kong’s approach to tackling corruption committed by its companies abroad. The various approaches lawmakers can take towards assigning responsibility for corruption to companies are presented. The approaches that prosecutors at the Department of Justice can take to adopt prosecutorial methods like those used in other upper-income jurisdictions and the ways that Independent Commission Against Corruption (ICAC) can assist in this work are also described.

Practical implications

This research has practical findings for Hong Kong’s policymakers, law firms and companies which operate in Hong Kong. For policymakers, we describe legal changes Hong Kong’s legislators will likely make in the years ahead and the preferred ways of engaging in such change. For law firms, we describe the legal changes coming to Hong Kong which legal advisors will need to advise their clients on. For companies, we describe changes that companies operating in Hong Kong will likely need to comply with in the future.

Social implications

This paper shows that when Hong Kong adopts best practice in the field of corporate criminalisation, Hong Kong’s role in “exporting” corruption will likely fall.

Originality/value

This article describes a set of legal changes which will change the way Hong Kong treats corruption. The literature tends to glamorise Hong Kong’s anti-corruption work. It is shown that its law falls far behind other jurisdictions, as well as how “treating companies like people” in the case of Hong Kong will likely change the way Hong Kong’s prosecutors think about crime and criminal perpetrators.

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Journal of Financial Crime, vol. 22 no. 1
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 1359-0790

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Article
Publication date: 1 February 1997

Mike Bishop

The aims of this paper are threefold: first, to present a brief description of the history and work of the Hong Kong Independent Commission Against Corruption (ICAC);…

Abstract

The aims of this paper are threefold: first, to present a brief description of the history and work of the Hong Kong Independent Commission Against Corruption (ICAC); secondly, to emphasise the importance of international liaison and cooperation as a strategy to transcend jurisdictional barriers in the fight against corruption and corruption‐related crime; and, thirdly, to reconfirm the ICAC's continued role in and commitment to that strategy beyond 1997.

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Journal of Financial Crime, vol. 4 no. 4
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 1359-0790

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Book part
Publication date: 8 March 2021

Jon S. T. Quah

Singapore and Hong Kong are the least corrupt Asian countries according to their rankings and scores on Transparency International’s Corruption Perceptions Index in 2018…

Abstract

Singapore and Hong Kong are the least corrupt Asian countries according to their rankings and scores on Transparency International’s Corruption Perceptions Index in 2018 and other indicators. This chapter explains why these two city-states have succeeded in minimizing corruption and identifies the four best practices which might serve as lessons for policy-makers in other countries.

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Corruption in the Public Sector: An International Perspective
Type: Book
ISBN: 978-1-83909-643-3

Keywords

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Abstract

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Different Paths to Curbing Corruption
Type: Book
ISBN: 978-1-78190-731-3

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Book part
Publication date: 4 August 2008

Anthony B.L. Cheung

Despite an intensified anti-corruption campaign, China's economic growth and social transition continue to breed loopholes and opportunities for big corruption, leading to…

Abstract

Despite an intensified anti-corruption campaign, China's economic growth and social transition continue to breed loopholes and opportunities for big corruption, leading to a money-oriented mentality and the collapse of ethical standards, and exposing the communist regime to greater risk of losing moral credibility and political trust. In Hong Kong, the setting up of the Independent Commission Against Corruption (ICAC) in 1974 marked the advent of a new comprehensive strategy to eradicate corruption and to rebuild trust in government. The ICAC was not just an anti-corruption enforcement agency per se, but an institution spearheading and representing integrity and governance transformation. This chapter considers how mainland China can learn from Hong Kong's experience and use the fight against corruption as a major political strategy to win the hearts and minds of the population and reform governance in the absence of more fundamental constitutional reforms, in a situation similar to Hong Kong's colonial administration of the 1970s–1980s deploying administrative means to minimize a political crisis.

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Comparative Governance Reform in Asia: Democracy, Corruption, and Government Trust
Type: Book
ISBN: 978-1-84663-996-8

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Article
Publication date: 9 October 2009

Abdul‐Gafaru Abdulai

In recognition of corruption as a major obstacle to the development processes of poor countries, the search for effective strategies in combating the phenomenon in…

Abstract

Purpose

In recognition of corruption as a major obstacle to the development processes of poor countries, the search for effective strategies in combating the phenomenon in developing countries has become a major preoccupation of the international donor community, particularly since the early 1990s. The purpose of this paper is to examine the role of “political will” in combating corruption in Hong Kong, Singapore and Ghana with the view to drawing significant lessons for all developing and transition countries in their anticorruption crusades.

Design/methodology/approach

The findings in this paper are based on an extensive review of relevant literature and personal experiences in Ghana.

Findings

This paper concludes that controlling corruption in a sustained manner requires a consistent demonstration of genuine commitment on the part of the top political elite towards the eradication of the menace. Where the commitment of the top political leadership to the goal of eradicating corruption in a country is weak, as has been the case in Ghana, governments are only likely to engage in “zero tolerance for corruption” talk but continue to play a “tolerant corruption” game. Anticorruption reforms, in this regard, are bound to fail.

Practical implications

The paper highlights a number of lessons from the successful anticorruption crusades of Singapore and Hong Kong that are significant for Ghana and other developing countries in their fight against corruption. These include the need for anticorruption reform initiatives to be participatory and inclusive of all stakeholders including public and private sectors as well as civil society; the need to provide adequate budgets and staff for specialized anticorruption agencies and grant them independence in the execution of their mandates; and the need to establish effective mechanisms for: providing positive incentives for those who comply with anticorruption laws; and exposing and sanctioning compromised individuals and institutions.

Originality/value

Whilst studies on the role of political will in combating corruption in developing countries abound, most of these have either not provided in‐depth country experiences or relied on single country cases. One major departure of this paper from extant literature is its cross‐country comparative nature.

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Journal of Financial Crime, vol. 16 no. 4
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 1359-0790

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Book part
Publication date: 26 November 2013

Jon S. T. Quah

Chapters 2–6 have dealt in turn with how Denmark, Finland, Hong Kong, New Zealand, and Singapore have been effective in curbing corruption, as manifested in their rankings…

Abstract

Chapters 2–6 have dealt in turn with how Denmark, Finland, Hong Kong, New Zealand, and Singapore have been effective in curbing corruption, as manifested in their rankings and scores on the five international indicators of the perceived extent of corruption. In contrast, Chapter 7 focuses on India’s ineffective anti-corruption measures and identifies the lessons which India can learn from their success in fighting corruption. The aim of this concluding chapter is twofold: to describe and compare the different paths taken by these six countries in their battle against corruption; and to identify the lessons which other countries can learn from their experiences in combating corruption. However, as the policy contexts of these six countries differ significantly, it is necessary to begin by providing an analysis of their contextual constraints before proceeding to compare their anti-corruption strategies and identifying the relevant lessons for other countries.

Details

Different Paths to Curbing Corruption
Type: Book
ISBN: 978-1-78190-731-3

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