EY India expands fraud investigation and dispute services into Bangladesh

25 October 2017 Consultancy.in 3 min. read

In a bid to help mitigate key risks that accompany major economic expansion, EY India has expanded it Fraud Investigation and Dispute Services into Bangladesh. The move comes amid an overall expansion in the region over the past six months.

Bangladesh has emerged as a rapidly developing economy over the last few years. According to a report from Big Four consultancy EY titled ‘Mitigating fraud, bribery and corruption risks in Bangladesh,’ the country is one of the ten emerging markets of the future, and is currently the second fastest growing economy in the world, having achieved a GDP growth rate of higher than 6% over the last three years. By 2019, this growth rate is expected to reach 7%.

The rapid growth comes on the back of a thriving domestic industry, as well as a flood of investments from Multinational Corporations (MNCs). However, this investment from private entities abroad is accompanied with concern about the rampant corruption in the country. According to the report from the Big Four firm, the market is riddled with risks of fraud and corruption, primarily due to widespread practices of bribing public officials arising from a lack of integrity, prevalence of middlemen, and poor governance.

IMF's Projection on GDP Growth

The scenario is reflected in the numbers. As per the report, Bangladesh ranked 145th on Transparency International’s Corruption Perception Index. Moreover, According to the World Bank Enterprise Survey in 2013, the levels of corruption are only rising. Amongst the firms surveyed, nearly 48% experienced at least one bribe payment or request for cash. Nearly 44% were asked for a bribe during a public transaction, and nearly 49% were expected to give gifts in return for a governmental contract.

Now, in a bid to support the economic expansion in the region by mitigating risks of corruption, EY has expanded its Fraud Investigation and Dispute Services into Bangladesh. The firm divides its services in the segment into four verticals: Fraud and corruption risk assessment, which is self explanatory; ethical framework, which involves designing an organisation’s compliance framework based on its unique challenges and resources; Vendor background checks and compliance assessment, which conducts third-party assessment; and Forensic investigation, which uses the firms vast technological, data analytical and forensic capabilities to get to the bottom of an incidence of corruption.

Bribery Percentages

In order to bolster its local presence, the firm has established a branch for its fraud services in their Dhaka office, to be operated by professionals who are experienced in dealing with fraud in Bangladesh. The National Leader for EY India and Bangladesh’s Fraud Investigation and Dispute Services segment, Arpinder Singh commented, “Organisations in Bangladesh are looking to capitalise on the business opportunities present, but can potentially face challenges around fraud and misconduct. There is a need in the market for forensic services to enable corporates to build ethical business, foster transparency and at the same time, deter perpetrators… we see the demand accelerating in the near future and are looking to double our team over the next one year.”