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Clifford Chance

Clifford Chance

Regulatory Investigations and Financial Crime Insights

Global Investigations Review (GIR)'s Corporate Investigations Guide for Australia – high profile investigations, regulatory developments and key principles

GIR has published the seventh edition of its practical guide for external and in-house counsel, compliance officers and accounting practitioners. Members of the Clifford Chance global RIFC practice are editors and authored several chapters including the Australia chapter.

The Seventh Edition of the Practitioner's Guide to Global Investigations has been published and Clifford Chance has once again taken the lead on publishing a number of chapters. Access to the full publication can be found here. Members of Australia's RIFC practice, including Tim Grave, Lara Gotti, Alexandra Zhu and Henry Garing, have outlined the key drivers in Australia, including the usual guidance to practitioners on topics such as practical considerations in regulatory investigations, both domestic and international, internal investigations and enforcement proceedings.

The chapter also examines a shift in priorities for Australia's key regulators, with corporate culture high on this list of areas to watch out for. A parliamentary inquiry into sexual harassment against women in the mining industry workforce has shone a light on Western Australia's most lucrative industry and a key driver of the Australian economy. The key takeaways for practitioners is a strong criticism of how these businesses are handling the harassment and brings into focus workplace health and safety, employment, investigations and corporate governance, all as areas needing significant improvement. Regulatory involvement is already on foot and is likely to increase in the years to come.

Off the back of the now-concluded Royal Commission into financial institutions, financial crime remains a key focus and the chapter explores topics such as anti-money laundering. A new section on sanctions, in the wake of global developments around the Russian invasion of Ukraine, guides practitioners through the key elements of the Australian sanctions regime. Other key topics include data privacy, cyber security, whistleblowing and employee rights in investigations. The difficulties faced by companies in navigating ESG (Environmental, Social and Corporate Governance) matters is highlighted, particularly in light of the priorities placed on these matters by investors and companies.

Whilst only a snapshot of the investigations space in Australia, this chapter helps guide practitioners through a complex and often demanding process. Feel free to reach out to any of the authors if you'd like to discuss more.

The Clifford Chance APAC L&DR team also authored the Hong Kong and Singapore chapters of GIR. For more on recent high-profile investigations and anticipated regulatory developments in Hong Kong, see here.

For more on recent high-profile investigations and anticipated regulatory developments in Singapore, see here.

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