Legal & documents
Société Générale Equipment Finance Benelux B.V.
Anti-Bribery and Anti-Corruption Policy
The SG group has a zero-tolerance approach to all forms of bribery. All SG employees and third parties that act on SG’s behalf are strictly prohibited from having any involvement whatsoever in acts of bribery and corruption. The purpose of this Policy is to ensure that SGEF Benelux conducts its business with integrity, does not become involved in any form of bribery and corruption and complies with the anti-bribery and corruption laws in all the jurisdictions in which it operates. All Employees and third parties that act on SG’s behalf must practice high standards of integrity and stringently comply with this Policy. Gifts, Business Entertainment and Events should be legitimate, modest, reasonable, appropriate, transparent, proportionate and acceptable in context of the occasion and comply with this Policy. This Policy is applicable not only to SGEF Benelux when it acts on its own behalf, but also where SGEF Benelux retains Third Parties to perform services for it.
1.1 Definition of Terms Used within this Anti Bribery and Corruption Policy
Active bribery can be defined as any action involving the giving, promising to give or offering of an advantage (which is Anything of Value), to any person, which is designed to influence them to improperly perform the exercise of a function (public or private) or to induce or reward them to act contrary to the known rules of honesty and integrity.
Passive bribery can be defined as the soliciting, accepting or receiving of an advantage (which is Anything of Value), from any person, which is designed to influence them to improperly perform the exercise of a function (public or private) or to induce or reward them to act contrary to the known rules of honesty and integrity.
Anything of Value means any advantage, and includes, but is not limited to: money, loans, fees, stock, contractual right or interest, real estate, personal property, or other interests arising from business relationships, Gifts, Business Entertainment, Events contributions, donations or sponsorships made at the suggestion or direction of a Public Official, travel and travel related expenses, below-market discounts, refunds, rebates, preferential treatment in the provision of, or preferential access to, business opportunities, goods or services that do not have a commercially reasonable justification, or other improper inducements. Anything of Value can also mean an offer of employment to or at the suggestion or direction of a Public Official.
Gifts mean any form of gift, product, gratuity or benefit (including anything of nominal value) that is given or received. It does not include financial benefits, Business Entertainment or Events.
Events include three categories: (1) Business Events are devoted to networking, professional and business matters and involve business content such as road shows, conferences, presentations, seminars, pitches, speeches, professional fairs and/or the marketing of products and services, including public relations and press events; (2) Social Events are devoted to relationship building and contain social content such as corporate hospitality - closing or completion dinners, sporting, cultural, recreational, tickets or otherwise It cannot exceed 24 hours; and (3) Mixed Events are devoted to both networking, professional and business matters and relationship building. The programme involves both business and social content. The business content must account for 50% of the total programme time.
Business Entertainment includes general business courtesies, basic meals and drinks that are not considered to be an Event and are processed through the internal expenses process.
Public Official refers to any level of elected or appointed official, officer or employee, or other person acting in an official capacity for any:
> government agency, department or instrument;
> entity owned or controlled by any of the above, this includes central banks, sovereign wealth funds, and any business venture that is owned or controlled by a government entity;
> judicial official; local, regional, or national government;
> political party;
> public international organization (e.g., the United Nations or World Bank);
Third Party/Third Parties: means any third party that performs services on SGEF Benelux’s behalf or in connection with its business and/or provides services during the course of any SG Group business. When considering whether a person or entity is a Third Party for the purposes of this Policy, it is the function they perform that needs to be considered.
2. Prohibition of Bribery and Corruption In Any Form
All acts of bribery or corruption are prohibited. No Employee shall:
> directly or indirectly offer Anything of Value to clients, customers, suppliers, Public Officials or any Third Party in order to obtain an advantage of any kind, which includes obtaining or retaining business for or on behalf of SGEF Benelux;
> directly or indirectly solicit or accept Anything of Value from clients, customers, suppliers, Public Officials or and Third Party or seek an advantage of any kind in return.
If Employees are faced with a choice between becoming involved in bribery and corruption and losing business, he or she must choose to forgo the business. Acts of bribery and corruption can lead to personal criminal liability and to liability for SGEF Benelux whether an employee is offering or accepting a bribe.
3. Gifts, Business Entertainment and Events
3.1 General Principles
Employees (or someone on their behalf) must not:
> give, promise to give or offer Gifts, Business Entertainment or Events (active bribery); or
> solicit, accept or receive Gifts, Business Entertainment or Events (passive bribery)
> create a conflict of interest between the interests of an Employee, those of the recipient or SGEF Benelux;
> constitute an improper inducement or influence, including, but not limited to, any expectation or hope that a business > advantage will be received, or to reward a business advantage already given;
> result in family members or friends of Employees receiving Gifts, Business Entertainment or Events; and
> breach relevant laws and regulations;
The following principles must also be considered when deciding upon the acceptability of giving and receiving Gifts or providing and accepting Business Entertainment and Events:
> the intention behind the Gift, Business Entertainment and Event and if there is a legitimate business purpose (eg: the development of business relationships or the promotion of SGEF Benelux products or services);
> if they are modest and reasonable in value, appropriate in all the circumstances (type, good taste, status of the recipient and timing) and do not compromise the integrity and reputation of SGEF Benelux;
> they are proportionate and acceptable in the context of the business occasion and they are in accordance with usual business practice. In other words, it must not be so lavish as to create the appearance that SGEF Benelux are intending to cause anyone to make a decision in return for receiving them;
> they are transparent and can be discussed openly. In other words, if it were reported to the media it would neither cause embarrassment to the recipient or SGEF Benelux
> they are not given too frequently in respect of the same recipient;
> they are timed appropriately. In other words, they do not coincide with the engagement in a bid process or pitch for prospective work, or any decision in relation to new business/transactions, or the removal of any other business arrangement; and
> For the avoidance of doubt, if the giving or receiving of a Gift, Business Entertainment and Event is prohibited if made directly, it is also prohibited if made indirectly (eg: via a third party).
3.2 Public Officials
Particular care must be taken when dealing with Public Officials, particularly when the Public Official is in the process of making a discretionary decision involving SGEF Benelux.
Gifts, Business Entertainment, Events, accommodation, travel, transport costs and Anything of Value should not be offered to, or accepted from, Public Officials without prior approval.
4. Use of Third Parties
Employees must exercise care when selecting and dealing with Third Parties and ensure the appropriate approval processes are strictly adhered to.
4.1 Risks Associated With Third Parties
A Third Party could potentially:
> pay or receive a bribe on SGEF Benelux’s behalf or whilst conducting SGEF Benelux’s business; or
> use their influence within their organization or with other parties to ensure that business is obtained or retained for SGEF Benelux or the Third Party
4.2 Relevant Considerations When Engaging Third Parties
It is very important that the appropriate approval and review processes are followed for third parties.
No Employee may give, promise to give, offer, solicit, accept or receive Anything of Value in any form either directly or indirectly in connection with any procurement, commercial transaction or relationship where SGEF Benelux is a party.
Where SGEF Benelux invites bids for tenders (both competitive and non-competitive) from external suppliers for goods and or services, suppliers may not engage in bribery, collusive practices or any other form of corruption to obtain or retain business. Suppliers of products or services should not be taken into consideration by SGEF Benelux if they seek to extort Anything of Value either directly or indirectly from SGEF Benelux.
It is important to appreciate that an act of bribery or corruption by Employees, suppliers or Third Parties may lead to SGEF Benelux being excluded from tendering for all future procurement contracts involving public or utilities contracts.
5. Facilitation Payments
Facilitation payments are small sums of money which, in certain countries, are requested in order to ensure the successful completion of certain routine Government or administrative procedures. The SG group does not permit facilitation payments in any country in which they do business.
6. Charitable Donations, Sponsorships and Political Donations
Contributions to charitable works, associations and other not-for-profit organizations and sponsorships are permitted by SGEF Benelux on the basis that they are legal and ethical and not made with any underlying intent to induce improper conduct.