Bribery investigation in to Wal-Mart focusing on three countries.

29 Jun

Recently, Wal-Mart was caught red handed in a bribery issue with Mexico’s government, paving the way for rapid expansion by lining the pockets of bureaucrats. Further investigation in to the allegations have caused prosecutors to expand their original search, looking also in to the mega corporation’s business in China and Brazil. All three countries have a culture where bribery is almost mandatory to conduct business in an expedient manner, but the United States has a national law against bribing international bureaucrats.

This is, unfortunately, a touchy issue. While Wal-Mart is easy to attack because of its massive standing in our culture, they fall victim to the same problems and dilemmas every business does when dealing with international interests. The cultures in Mexico, Brazil, and China require bribery of anyone wishing to build their business in those countries, it’s just that Wal-Mart is more likely to be able to put out the money needed to answer those requests.

I don’t completely sympathize with Wal-Mart, though, because no matter how bad the problem, the retail store giant should have taken the moral high ground. The reputation of Wal-Mart is already thoroughly soiled with how they treat their employees, and the quality of their goods. The last thing they needed was a bribery scandal. No matter how many companies are currently bribing politicians all over the globe, the name associated with bribery for a long time to come will be Wal-Mart.

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