The French AFA on their Anti-Corruption Activities and Guidance [Podcast]


Post By: Adam Turteltaub

In 2016 France adopted a new law to help combat corruption. Inspired by legislation in the US, UK and Netherlands, Article 17 of what is known as Sapin II, includes provisions requiring organizations above a certain size to have an anticorruption program.

The law also led to the creation of the Agencie Francaise Anticorruption, or AFA. To ensure the independence and integrity of the AFA, its director is a senior judge appointed by the President for a 6-year non-renewable term.

In order to understand more about the AFA and its mandate we spoke with Julien Betolaud, Senior International Affairs Officer, and Izadora Zubek, International Affairs Officer. Julien will also be speaking at the SCCE 2021 European Compliance & Ethics Institute, which will be conducted in a virtual format 15-17 March.

As they explain in this podcast, the AFA plays a central role in monitoring organizations that have a corruption-related DPA in place. Airbus is one notable example. AFA auditors are authorized to access documents and interview anyone whose assistance is deemed necessary. They are also authorized to interview suppliers, intermediaries, and clients.

In addition to these responsibilities the AFA also provides extensive guidance to both public and private entities on the development of anticorruption compliance programs, including how to meet the eight points included in the Sapin II law. The list of these points will be familiar to anyone in compliance and includes a code of conduct, whistleblowing system, risk mapping, and internal monitoring.

On the AFA website are a number of documents designed to help inform compliance efforts (Note: many of these are in English, and Google Chrome’s translate feature works very well with the site). Most notably, their recommendations were updated earlier in 2021 after an extensive review. An English version will be published to the site in late February.

The AFA also actively engages with the business community, seeking opportunities to have as wide an impact as possible. They have held meetings with industry sectors designed to help identify the challenges they face and facilitate the sharing of solutions. They even provide direction to organizations who request it.

Listen in to learn more about the AFA’s work, and then plan on joining us 15-17 March for the 9th Annual European Compliance & Ethics Institute.


  1. Tres interessant, avec l’espoir que des personnes comme vous et votre entite petit a petit changent le monde

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