Underpinning the company commitment to responsible corporate citizenship and the pursuit of a sustainable future – economic, social and environmental – the General Business Principles set out guiding principles on integrity and ethics in business conduct. They govern The company’ business decisions and actions throughout the world and apply equally to corporate actions and to the behavior of individual employees in conducting the company business. They are subject to applicable laws.
The General Business Principles are not all-encompassing, but formulate minimum requirements of behavior. They leave product divisions and country management free to specify further local rules of business conduct. To drive the practical deployment of the General Business Principles, a set of GBP Directives have been published, which are applicable to all employees. There are also separate Directives, which apply to specific categories of employees, such as the Financial Code of Ethics and the Purchasing Code of Ethics. The GBP Directives and the category-specific Directives form an integral part of the General Business Principles (jointly be referred to as ‘GBP’). The General Business Principles, which have been adopted by the Board of Management and approved by its Supervisory Board, are reviewed on a regular basis and revised if necessary.