Evonik bans all forms of corruption.
Corruption means requesting, accepting, offering or granting personal benefits in connection with a business transaction or public function. Such benefits may be a gift, an invitation or another favor that benefits the person involved or a third party, for example, a relative.
Since corruption normally distorts competition and jeopardizes the integrity of state conduct if a public official is involved, it is illegal in nearly all countries.
Evonik is committed to fair competition to the benefit of its customers, shareholders and other stakeholders. In addition, Evonik respects the independence of public officials. Therefore, Evonik bans all forms of corruption, including "facilitation payments”. These are payments made to a public official to initiate or speed up routine official acts to which Evonik is entitled. Evonik therefore sets stricter standards than the law in some countries.
Benefits in the form of cash and similar payments are not permitted, even in cases where they would not constitute corruption. However, in some cases, regional regulations issued by Evonik may permit exceptions. These must be authorized by the responsible Compliance Officer.
In practice, gifts and invitations to employees, business partners and public officials are the most common type of benefit. The granting and acceptance of such benefits is only allowed if they are appropriate. In particular, the acceptance of an appropriate benefit must not influence or even appear to influence the employee’s decisions. That is measured primarily by the financial value of the benefit, the function and position of the recipient, its timing in relation to negotiations and decision-making processes, and by business customs in the country concerned.
Benefits to related parties, for example, family members, are only permitted in very limited circumstances.
Particularly stringent legal restrictions apply to benefits to public officials. Public officials do not simply comprise people who hold an official position or function, for example, representatives of authorities. University professors and representatives of state-owned companies may also be considered officials. Benefits to public officials are therefore only permitted on a very limited scale, subject to Evonik’s regional regulations.
Relationships with business partners must be based exclusively on objective criteria. That applies above all to the selection of business partners.
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