by BCBP Editor

by Francis Mapile, BCBP Manila

Let me share this with our brothers and sisters who own or manage SMEs ( Small and Medium-sized Enterprises) and post this as a challenge to join the commitment to ethical business practices and good corporate governance. Our company, represented by my partner, my wife, joined other SME frontrunners in a conference entitled “SMEs as a Major Force in Promoting Integrity and Accountability in Business,” put together by AIM’s HILLS Program on Good Governance a few months ago.

The Conference was capped by this Integrity Pledge, which all participants swore by and which will see for us the perfect business practices and governance we are all dreaming of:

“We will prohibit bribery in any form in all the activities under our control and ensure that our charitable and political contributions, business gifts, and sponsorships are transparent and will not be for the purpose of attempting to influence the recipient, whether government or private, into an improper exercise of functions, duties or judgment.

“We will maintain a conduct a code of conduct to guide our employees towards ethical and accountable behavior at all times, and will apply appropriate sanctions for violations of the code.

“We will maintain channels by which employees and other stakeholders can raise ethical concerns and report suspicious circumstances in confidence without risk of reprisal.

“We will enter into integrity pacts with other businesses and with government agencies when dealing with procedures related to the bidding and procurement of supplies, materials, equipment and construction.

“We will refrain from engaging in business with parties who have demonstrated unethical business practices.
“To ensure collective action among business enterprises to foster ethical, clean and transparent business transactions in the Philippines, we commit to :

“Support a nationwide initiative intended to create fair market conditions, transparency in business transactions and ensure good corporate governance; share “best practice”, tools and concepts which are intended to be used by all participating entities to achieve the goals of the nationwide initiative; assist and contribute ideas to develop a unified “Business Code of Conduct” acceptable to all participating entities; participate in the creation of key measures and control activities intended to ensure transparency, integrity and ethical business practice.; support the development of an audit and certification program that will offer a toolbox for enterprises to introduce and implement ethical practices in their business processes; and institutionalize the whole processes to promote sustainability of the integrity initiative.”

This Commitment Statement is definitely aligned with the BCBP’s BE HONEST Advocacy. Together with all of us walking our talk, following and observing our commitment for good governance and utmost honesty, I am certain that we can make a difference … and make an impact in the marketplace.

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