Corporate integrity has to be adopted by every member of the industry and the CII National Committee on Integrity and Transparency in Governance continued its effort towards making Indian industry ethical.
Five years ago, one of the first activities that the Committee undertook was to prepare a detailed CII Code of Ethics which could be adopted by Members on a voluntary basis. To make it simple for Membership to follow, a Model Code of Conduct, with only six basic principles, was recommended last year. Around 300 companies have confirmed that they would follow the Model Code, a first step towards transparency and good practices in companies. Guidelines are also being developed for companies that wish to pursue good corporate citizenship, beyond the Model Code. Such companies need to transcend the compliance threshold to emerge as socially responsible businesses.
While CVOs guide public sector companies and MNCs have Chief Compliance Officers, several private sector companies lack a trained compliance officer. Given this need, an Executive Education programme on Compliance Management was developed along with ISB and GE. The first such programme was held in July/ August 2016 at ISB with 35 industry participants.
Since a lack of transparency in reality and healthcare sectors impacts the common man, two working groups were set up to undertake a study on how to build a culture of transparency in these sectors. The Reality Sector Working Group, under the Chairmanship of Mr Brotin Banerjee, MD and CEO, Tata Housing focussed on scheduled delivery of flats to buyers. It aims to provide guidelines on a Model Charter for Self Governance, beyond RERA Act. The Working Group on Healthcare, under the Chairmanship of Mr Farhad Forbes, Co-Chairman, Forbes Marshall, is focussed on promoting voluntary disclosures and transparency as well as benchmarking to international best practices. To sensitize Indian industry towards human rights, in alignment with international practices, work commenced with focus on international rules and guidelines such as the UN Guiding Principles.
Discussions on a proposed Centre of Excellence to build capacity in Governance were taken forward. This Centre would undertake awareness sessions, training programmes for employee onboarding, working with Government on impending legislation and developing code of ethics, amongst others.
A Seminar on ‘Facilitating a Corruption-Free Environment for Achieving High Growth’ was organised in December 2016, along with the Vigilance Study Circle (Delhi& NCR), an organization of Chief Vigilance Officers of the Ministries and the public sector.
Source: CII Annual Report 2017