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Good Governance Program

Promoting rule of law for business

The impact of corruption on commercial interests is immense. The UN Global Compact cites that corruption adds an estimated 10% or more to the costs of doing business in many parts of the world, and according to World Bank estimates, corruption in the form of bribery has become a $1 trillion industry. The International Trade Administrationís (ITA) Good Governance Program (GGP) furthers our mission to strengthen the global competitiveness of U.S. firm by reducing the tax of bribery and the trade barrier of corruption.

U.S. companies often cite corruption, weak rule of law, the lack of customs enforcement, and poor judicial reform as key impediments to doing business in developing countries. The GGP uses country-tailored approaches to support local efforts by private sector organizations working to combat corruption. By supporting and advising working groups that are committed to ethical business practices and affecting change, the GGP works to ensure that U.S. firms have an equal opportunity to compete in a transparent business environment.

Since 1998, the Good Governance Program (GGP) has increased market access and ensured a level playing field for U.S. companies in emerging markets by promoting:

  • Transparency through business ethics and anti-corruption
  • Accountability in corporate governance
  • Fairness in commercial dispute resolution
  • Protection of intellectual property rights

The International Trade Administration’s GGP has strengthened private sector-led efforts to promote transparency in Armenia, Azerbaijan, Colombia, El Salvador, Georgia, Guatemala, Honduras, Kazakhstan, Nicaragua, Panama, Paraguay, Romania, Russia, Slovakia, and Uzbekistan. ITA is currently working in Colombia and Mexico. Additionally, in conjunction with the Inter-American Investment Corporation, ITA is offering a two-week business ethics training program for business leaders from Jamaica, Barbados, and Trinidad and Tobago in August 2010.

Please contact us should you have any questions about the GGP resource tools, available at:

A free online course in Business Ethics, based on the Good Governance Business Ethics Manual and jointly produced with the World Bank Institute, is also available online at:


external Links to web sites outside the U.S. Federal Government or the use of trade, firm, or corporation names within the International Trade Administration web sites are for the convenience of the user. Such use does not constitute an official endorsement or approval by the U.S. Commerce Department of any private sector website, product, or service.

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Business Ethics: A Manual for Managing a Responsible Business Enterprise in Emerging Market Economies
Handbook for Commercial Dispute Resolution in Russia

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