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Bribery In International Marketing Marketing Essay

Bribery and problem is a means of life in many countries and these routines affect just how international business is regularly conducted. However, in almost all of these countries, it is against the law to provide or obtain bribes or engage in corrupt techniques. Yet these corrupt methods are a part of the 'culture' or normal way of doing businesses. Unless companies 'conform' to such practices, in many cases, international business can't be transacted.

This essay will try to provide dialogue about bribery and problem in international trade, with samples from very different perspective in according to the principal ethical system, despite whatever religious, realistic and dynamics. Analyses of the case of Siemens bribery scandal related to moral issues will be looked into.

Bribery is an important issue of concern for most companies. Confrontation of bribery range across many countries, but everyone has some other concept about it, such as in Hong Kong and Greece, here, managers are less critical of bribery in certain situations than that of the Americas. Paying bribery carries with it risky to damaging the company's standing with the united states that your briberies are paid, with home too. Furthermore, there is also the risk that the commercial culture of the business can be more open-minded of many of other routines at the legalities. There is also evidence to claim that those countries with the reputation for bribery and problem damage themselves, as it shows in their monetary growth, has a minimal rates for high level of corruption, like this of Nigeria.

It holds true to state that bribery in international marketplaces can result in astonishment,

bewilderment and misunderstanding for expatriates, at both organisational and

personal levels. This essay examines bribery from two viewpoints and tries to

develop techniques to bridge them. The first point of view is relativist, taking that

different cultures have different ethical values and not imposing an expatriate's

values onto another culture. The second viewpoint is universalist, averring that

ethics apply anywhere in the world, and is based on emotional and economic

grounds. To solve these two approaches, it is suggested that aiming to understand

the cultural forces that determine home and abroad attitudes to the countless forms

of bribery, this is a first step to adjustment. The next step is the introduction of a

global or regional code of conduct that allows overall flexibility within the 'grey' zone. The

result could be an evolving code that adapts to the countless dimensions of bribery for

each country's situation, in a fashion that is a negotiation between your cultural,

psychological and economical values of any expatriate's organisation and of local



International marketing is complex as foreign environments are different

from home surroundings, as they fluctuate on physical, ethnic, legalpolitical,

economic, competitive and distributive measurements (Ball and McCulloch

1996). Due to these environments, marketers can adjust parts of the marketing

mix for every international country or region (Hoang 1997), for example, a company

might alter its presentation, distribution channels and advertising in each of its

international marketplaces.

These marketing blend issues aren't the one ones facing international marketers.

Cultural management issues are essential too, and bribery is the most important of

these, at least for Australian and US marketing managers (Armstrong et al. 1990).

For example, should a firm pay a traditions standard to process a shipment through

normal programs? Should a company pay education expenditures in its home country for

the child of your prince in an abroad country that the company wants to enter into? Should

payments to vendors be paid into two separate accounts when one is

apparently unlawful? Should money in the general public relationships budget be paid to someone

who appears to do nothing at all for public relations other than being related to someone

in ability? Issues like they are important to someone from a culture where these

activities are different.


Nevertheless, little research has been done on the ethics of international marketing

(Armstrong and Sweeney 1994), and interest in ethical issues on the whole has been

mainly empirical (Donaldson 1989). In addition, levels of corruption vary widely

around the entire world, as seen in a survey of 52 countries by Transparency

International (1997). Furthermore, the problem of bribery specifically is often

considered within only 1 of the six different conditions above, and bribery may also be mentioned in the legal environment chapter of your textbook for

example, Keegan and Inexperienced 1997), where in fact the effect of the United State's Foreign

Corrupt Practices Action (FCPA) on that country's ability to compete with Europe in

international marketplaces is covered (Graham 1984). Alternatively, bribery is

sometimes in the general public relations part of any textbook (Phillips Doole

and Lowe 1994), where it is talked about along with concern about corporate

citizenship and worker safety. Furthermore, bribery can be cured as another,

ethical concern, usually based on cultural issues (Donaldson 1996).

However, the purpose of this article is to consider bribery from across several

environments such as legal, cultural, economic and competitive, in order to

develop a managerial method of the problem. Contribution can be an integrated and

up-to-date review of these several viewpoints in an application that international

marketing managers will dsicover useful. Aswell as, the review is from a non-US

view, while several other paperwork have a All of us view that is different from other

developed countries (Donaldson 1996; Mayo 1992; Across the Panel 1993). It is

concluded that managers can develop a code of conduct for the number of dimensions

of bribery that bridges the relativist and universalist views.

This article has four main parts. First of all, bribery in growing countries is

looked at from a American view point that aims toshow the roots of bribery may be

common to both. This leads into a cultural, relativist view of bribery, which

suggests that bribery is suitable if it's normal in the culture of the overseas

country. However, counter arguments to the relativist view are then offered,

including internal and economic arguments. Finally, facing these two

contrasting positions, the essay considers how management could handle bribery.

In this essay, bribery is defined broadly: "bribery is offering, or encouraging to pay,

'anything of value' to influence an act or decision by officials in a foreign

government, including politicians, a political get together or a bureaucrat to aid in

obtaining, keeping, or directing business to any person" (based on the FCPA's

definition). This classification will not cover issues such as real human rights or child labor use, intimate harassment or industrial espionage. Our

definition of working with officials about business concerns is the one of major

concern to marketing managers in particular.


Four Roots of Bribery

From a American viewpoint, bribery sometimes appears to be caused just by the

greed of locals, especially poor local people. however bribery has four, more complex roots

which may actually can be found in both Western and producing countries.

Firstly, a bribe can be simply associated with a "tip" to make sure promptness at a restaurant, just as

a restaurant kitchen can sometimes have inefficient procedures that want human

involvement to triumph over, so can the bureaucracy of any producing country. Bribes

may be seen to be always a way of 'purchasing' federal government services when a government

cannot afford to provide salaries that are enough for the service to be provided

free to everyone (Tullock 1996). Thus, bribery may be a form of privatisation

that makes the prosperous who are able it, purchase something. Indeed, the relatively

high-principled FCPA that attempts to limit the participation of US companies in bribery,

actually permits repayments to officials to do their normal obligations while disallowing

payments to high-level officials for special mementos. A primary example is a US business

person can bribe a customs official to expedite an inspection however, not to skip it

altogether. However, the next three roots of bribery may not be allowed by the FCPA.

Secondly, a bribe can be considered to be always a normal promotion activity. Such as for example that of

BMW cars are provided free to family members of politicians in Western

countries for the spillover influence on the prestige of the automobile. If the partner of the

Premier of Victoria, Australia has free use of your BMW, why cannot officials in

overseas countries who are near to real electric power also be given 'gift ideas' to help

promotion. In the same way, many European companies provide 'corporate hospitality'

at sporting venues such as at the Ascot, Henley and Wimbledon in the name of

promotion (Ramsay 1990). Therefore, how is this type of promotion different from some bribery in

developing countries?

This causes the third reason behind bribery, which relates to the overall idea of

gifts showing respect and appreciation to a person in a marriage, at times.

Gift giving is common at Christmas time in Western countries, and surprise giving at

birthday and holidays may provide the same goal in overseas countries (Onkvist

and Shaw 1997). As connections between clients and sellers move forward, a social

relationship is developed that can be enriched by gift giving. 'Community relationships

are often characterised by the exchange of items and hospitality as trust develops

between the gatherings. In seeking to build relationships of trust, the exchange of

gifts may be observed as an completely appropriate function of public bonding. ' (Timber 1995,

p. 11). This reciprocal surprise and favor providing is more important in some Asian

countries than in the Western world, simply because of their cultural beliefs (Hofstede 1991, p.


Finally, in food and other market segments in developing markets, the occasional

expatriate customers are usually asked to pay more than local people because the

stallholder has learned that his or her usual price is usually a far smaller percentage of

the discretionary spending of expatriate than that of an area. A dual price system


reflects the dual economies that exist in many developing countries and do not

exist to the same magnitude in western countries. That's, a inadequately paid overseas

official with an extended family moving into his small house may consider it

reasonable to ask a rich foreign business person staying at a five star hotel to

pay more than the usual low prices for labor and other services in his or her


Thus a bribe may be seen to improve collateral equally a progressive taxation system

aims to do in developed countries. The inequity without bribes in a developing

country may be sustained than in market or a taxation system of a developed

country, because the official will have high local 'vitality' from their

immediate and extended family, friends and politics party despite having low

monetary 'wealth'. In contrast to this, the international business person has lower power despite

having higher economic wealth. That's, bribery might not violate the Christian but

sometimes be considered to be a widespread doctrine of love you neighbor like yourself,

but actually affirm it (contra Coady in Way 1996, p. 19).

Overall in quick then, bribery is seen to exist and has roots that exist in both a European and an overseas


Cultural View of Bribery

Implicit in the conversation above is a relativist, ethnical knowledge of bribery -

'that what's right or wrong, good or bad, is determined by one's culture'. However, this

argument implies that there are no 'gold rules' root most real human behavior

(Way 1996, p. 19), that is, one's own culture is the major effect on views

about bribery. This concept of culture therefore has a right to be explored further.

Culture has five dimensions: the relationship between the individual and the

collective group, vitality differentials within modern culture, masculinity and femininity,

dealing with doubt and Confucian dynamism (Hofstede 1991). Several of

these dimensions strongly influence views about bribery. The first aspect of

individualism/collectivism would appear to be the most related to bribery (Tanzi

1995; in Onkvist and Shaw 1997, p. 175). Producing countries are more

collective than developed countries, that is, officials place better emphasis on

their responsibilities to their own extended people and friends, than do Western

business people.

However individualism/collectivism is not really the only cultural aspect affecting

bribery. Producing countries tend to be high on the next culture sizing of

power distance, that is, specific officers with which marketing

managers package have major obligations with their supervisors. Thus, the officials will

support a bribery culture if it is related to ability as a few of the four roots of

culture above were shown to be, and especially so if their own superiors accept

and foster bribery. In addition to this, some Parts of asia are more concerned with


virtuous habit than the abstract truth (which is related to the dimension of

Confucian dynamism). An official's genuine behavior toward his / her immediate

and extended family, and toward friends and superiors is more important than

abstract 'common' values applying to all humans, to which some Westerners

cling (Hofstede 1991). Onkvist and Shaw (1997, p. 175) appropriately sum up

this relativist, social view of bribery:

. . . the idea of arm's-length relationships would seem peculiar and alien.

It even would seem immoral. The idea that, economically speaking, one

should treat family and friends just as as strangers would

appear bizarre.

In short, a social view of bribery initially suggests that expatriate marketing

managers should simply fit in with local bribery practices wherever he or she

goes. However, the ethnical relativism approach to bribery developed above cannot be

the basis for a marketing manager's method of bribery, because recognition of

cultural differences is merely the starting point for international co-operation. That

is, a marketing director cannot completely adapt to a new culture and deal in

bribes with no regard for his or her own cultural worth, for an understanding of

another's culture does not mean forgoing one's own culture. 'Successful

intercultural encounters presuppose that the associates believe in their own beliefs.

If not, they have grown to be alienated persons, missing a sense of personal information' (Hofstede

1991, p. 237). To take care of the issue of bribery comprehensively for a real world

individuals involved in business, professionals need to consider issues apart from cultural

differences per se, and we turn to these relatively universalist issues next.

Economic and Managerial Issues of Bribery

Economic advantages of bribery for the obtaining official as well as for the company

that gets preferential treatment before its competitors, are obvious.

However, there are economic disadvantages for both the taking and the giving


First, bribery can send inappropriate alerts about demand price and supply cost in a

market market. More directly, bribery increases the cost of agreements and goods roughly

by five percent in Asia (Kraar 1995), this could perhaps be even more occasionally.

Secondly, it distorts the decision-making techniques too. When companies are selected

on the basis of what the decision-maker will obtain personally somewhat than the

contractors' potential to do the best, lowest cost job, then your whole economy suffers

misallocation of resources. This form of bribery was perhaps a major influence in

the recent meltdown of some Asian currencies. Thirdly, bribery may lead to

industrial requirements being fell with cultural and monetary repercussions upon

the firm. For example, employees may work in substandard conditions that may

impair production, people may pass away in complexes that collapse scheduled to building

standards incorrect, and the surroundings and firm's future may be damage by

over-zealous timber-felling.


Moreover, there are other disadvantages of bribery that are particularly important

for the presenting country. Firstly, home and overseas customers help pay for

'uneconomic' spending in bribes, often for the enrichment of a few overseas

individuals who become more wealthy than standard people of the giving

country. In 1995, bribery cost businesses almost $45 billion worldwide

(Kaltnhauser 1996). Secondly, bribery could be utilized against the giving

organisation, in the case of managers returning to the home country and rejoining

the salesforce at home could agree to bribes for techniques that the giving

organisation will not want done at home. That is, a relativist position that allows

a match between expatriate individuals and the 'corrupt' organisations overseas,

may also foster at home the separation of personal and organisational moral

standards, with consequences at home that the company does not want.

In brief then, bribery has financial and social negatives that a strictly cultural

understanding leading to a relativist frame of mind to it, may conceal.

How Can Professionals Deal with Bribery in a Competitive Market?

Given both contrasting views about bribery above, what can professionals in a

non-US company do to bridge the distance between a relativist and a universalist

approach to ethics. The practices and what managers in a US organization do is clear, they follow the FCPA or get around it by channeling funds through an agent who

then handles the bribery behind a screen. Some managers might try to offset a

competitor's bribe with an improved, total product - 'You might give you a cheap, a

better product, better distribution or better advertising to offset the good thing about the

bribe to your choice influencer' (Keegan 1989, p. 201).

This US position is an 'idealist' position that many non-US professionals may not

adopt, for it assumes that the better, total product will succeed the deal, when in

fact, bribery occurs to oftentimes effectively ensure that it does not. Moreover,

competing companies from European countries and Australia are permitted to treat bribes

as a tax-deductible business expense, minimizing the after-tax aftereffect of the bribe. In

April 1996, the OECD handed a resolution expressing bribes shouldn't be taxdeductible

and in 1993, Transparency International, a not-for-profit organisation

with chapters in 40 countries, attempted to increase knowing of bribery's

existence, but anti-foreign bribery legislation beyond your United States will not

yet can be found.

Moreover, is never sure of the level of bribes that competitors are offering for

a project, and so deciding how much to improve the total product to fight

bribery is difficult. Furthermore, bribery is sometimes paid for day-to-day

operations and a project, and so discussion of a better, total product may be

of limited usefulness. For example, if bribes aren't paid by a person company, it may

experience bureaucratic delays on wharves and in warehouses and its own goods may


be taken, while its bribe-paying competition do not experience these costly

problems. In short, curbing bribery from an idealistic position may be quixotic

until the United Nations or a similar company arranges for a multinational,

legal method of it.

Given the present, imperfect world within which companies operate, some more

options to take care of bribery can be found. One option is to choose to internationalise

into the less-corrupt countries. Clear examples of corrupt countries are China,

Indonesia and India, that are rated among the most corrupt countries to do

business on the planet after Russia; indeed, corruption in Indonesia"is nearly a

way of life". Only Singapore is more squeaky-clean than most European countries

("Hard graft in Asia" 1995, p. 61).

Organisation code of ethics. You can find another option to getting close the ethical

gaps in international marketing. First of all, within the house firm, professionals could

develop an organisation code of ethics for any non-home country within which it

operates, or maybe for a specific region of many countries. For any these

countries, this code would summarize the degree of standardisation and adaptation in

each of eight or so proportions of bribery, such as expediting bureaucratic

processes, promotion, corporate hospitality, products, dual prices, wage rates,

occupational health insurance and safety specifications, and lobbying to influence government

policies. The code would take into consideration the social, legal-political,

economic, competitive and distributive environments of each foreign market and

the home company. For instance, it might designate when bribes appear on an

invoice so when they may not (adapted Cadbury 1987). Furthermore,

acknowledging the greatest distinctions between an expatriate's and his or her

home organization's moral systems, and the local environment's ethical

standards, this code might designate when some acquisitions or tenders are outsourced

away from the organisation to a local agent.

familiarisation tour of the house organisation would help home country managers

appreciate overseas functions, and aiding with scholarships to home country

universities would foster long-term links when the students come back.

Of course, professionals need to find out relevant countrywide and international laws or hire

reputable attorneys who know local laws and traditions. Although local legal and

judicial systems can be 'underdeveloped', flawed and flouted (for example, with

bribes), a firm may have in its global code that local laws will always be

observed, even if the dangers involved with flouting them, even though

competitors may be prepared to take the dangers.

Finally, to help implementation of the code, the organisation could institute and

code of ethics sensitisation training before managers enter an international country

and when they go back, based on cross-cultural sensitisation classes like those

discussed in Hofstede (1991, p. 232). Ethics audits may be carried out,

emphasising improvement and learning about the functions used, such as TQM

continual improvement programs do. Furthermore, these audits would foster an evolving

awareness of moral considerations for every single of the eight measurements in a particular

organisation, and in a specific country.


Evidence suggests that bribery is a fact of life in international marketing that can lead to astonishment,

bewilderment and misunderstanding for expatriates at both organisational and personal

levels. Two viewpoints about bribery were evaluated. The first viewpoint was

relativist, agreeing to that bribery has the same origins in Western and other countries

and so different honest systems may be simply the consequence of different cultural

values. On the other hand, the second, universalist point of view is that a set of honest values

applies all over the world, based on internal and economic grounds. To

bridge these two views, it is immensely important to attempt to understand the cultural

forces that determine home and abroad' behaviour to the countless kinds of bribery,

which will indeed be a first step to adjustment. The next thing is to develop a worldwide or regional code

of conduct which allows flexibility inside a gray zone for some situations in

particular countries, predicated on win-win adjustments. The result could be

an evolving code of do that adapts to the many proportions of bribery for

each country's situation, in a fashion that is a negotiation between your cultural,

psychological and economic values associated with an expatriates' company and of local



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