19 September 2014
GlaxoSmithKline (GSK) has been charged with bribery by the Chinese courts and has been fined £297 million.The pharmaceutical giant’s Chinese subsidiary GSK China Investment Co.
Ltd (GSKCI) has been charged with offering money or property to non-government personnel in order to obtain improper commercial gains, and been found guilty of bribing non-government personnel.
A statement released by GSK states that ‘the illegal activities of GSKCI are a clear breach of GSK’s governance and compliance procedures; and are wholly contrary to the values and standards expected from GSK employees.’The drug giant has also issued an apology to the Chinese government and its people.
GSK Chief Executive Officer, Sir Andrew Witty said: ‘Reaching a conclusion in the investigation of our Chinese business is important, but this has been a deeply disappointing matter for GSK. We have and will continue to learn from this.’
GSKCI will fund the multi-million pound fine through existing cash resources, which GSK will mention in the company’s third quarter update, including any associated costs and charges related to restructuring.This is not the first time GSK and other pharmaceutical companies have been caught and charged with bribery and corruption. G+C looked at this matter in more depth – click here to listen to G+C’s Pooja Kondhia speaking to Tony Woodcock, head of regulatory litigation at Stephenson Harwood LLP.