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Siemens and the Rolls of the Righteous

ethos

Sorce: Exame

Brasília – The steering committee of the Cadastro Empresa Pró-Ética — a corporate ethics registry presided by the Office of the Comptroller-General  (CGU) — decided on Friday to maintain Siemens on the list of companies that demonstrate adherence to corporate ethics standards.

After analyzing the responses obtained from Siemens, the Committee preferred to maintain it on the list, but only if it is subject to a special regimen of “rigorous  oversight.”

One of these oversight measures is the notification of authorities and the sharing of data needed to assess the company’s effectivness in preventing and reducing the occurrence of irregularities. In addition, a process of reevaluation will immediately … take up the question of whether the company is capable of remaining on the Pró-Ética Registry.

These precautions will be undertaken because even after Siemens was notified by the CGU, it failed to clarify whether any  new developments  occurred after the initial evaluation that placed it on the registry, which might involve it in irregularities not taken into account at the time of its admission to the list.

The CGU also requested information on the effective application of the company’s integrity program in reccent years in Brazil.

“Given the insuffiiciency of  the information furnished by the company on its activities after being admitted to the Pró-Ética prograrm  (August 2011), the Steering Committee decided to maintain it in the Registry”, according to a note issued by the Committee.

Leniency

In May, Siemens sought out the antitrust agency, CADE, in ordere to negotiate a leniency deal in which six of its key executives related the workings of a scheme to defraud billion-dollar auctions between 1998 and 2008. The negotiations over Siemen’s offer to unmask the cartel began on March 6, 2012 and concluded on May 22, 2013, in São Paulo. The CADE investigation also resulted in the involvement of the federal police.

The approval process for admitting companies to the Registry begins with an evaluation by the Steering Committee, which comprises representatives of the CGU and the Instituto Ethos of Corporate Social Responsibility … as well as the National Confederation of Industries (CNI), The Brazilian Federation of Banks (Febraban), the BM&F Bovespa, the Ministry of Industrial and Commercial Development, (MDIC), the national export promotion agency  (Apex), the Institute of Indepdendent Auditores (Ibracon) and the Brazilian Service in Support of Small and Medium Companies  (Sebrae).

The list is actually quite a short one, so far:

  1. 3M do Brasil 45.985.371/0001-08 10/05/2012
  2. AES Eletropaulo 61.695.227/0001-93 01/12/2011
  3. AES Sul 02.016.440/0001-62 11/08/2011
  4. AES Tiete 02.998.609/0001-27 01/12/2011
  5. Banco do Brasil 00000000/0001-91 16/10/2012
  6. Banco Santander (Brasil) S.A. 90.400.888/0001-42 18/04/2013
  7. Caixa Econômica Federal 00.360.305/0001-04 10/05/2012
  8. Celesc 83878892/0001-55 16/10/2012
  9. CPFL Energia 02.429.144/0001-93 01/12/2011
  10. Dudalina 85120939/0004-95 16/10/2012
  11. Duratex 97837181/0001-47 16/10/2012
  12. EDP Energias do Brasil 03.983.431/0001-03 11/08/2011
  13. Infraero 00.352.294/0001-10 01/12/2011
  14. Johnson Controls Building Efficiency 01.092.686/0001-50 11/08/2011
  15. Siemens

Given this level of adherence, the question of whether Siemens should remain on the list — which resembles the Mercado Novo governance standard in the BM&FBovespa — seems almost trivial. Or better, scratch the almost.

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