Social responsibility and future-oriented action

Preamble

The KÖSTER BAUCHEMIE AG with headquarters in Aurich has specialized in the development, production, and sale of waterproofing products and systems. These systems protect and preserve buildings and structures worldwide.

The key to our success lies in our company-wide culture based on fairness, ethical compliance, and personal responsibility. We adhere to high ethical standards in our business practices and in the workplace.

This Code of Conduct (CoC) provides an orientation framework for all employees of the KÖSTER BAUCHEMIE AG.

The KÖSTER BAUCHEMIE AG is committed to fair employment and business relations and therewith is committed to creating a basis for responsible, corporate activity without however, creating third-party rights.

1. Basic understanding of corporate management

This CoC is based on a mutual basic understanding of social responsibility in corporate management. This means that the KÖSTER BAUCHEMIE AG assumes responsibility by considering the consequences of its business decisions and actions with regard to economic, technological, and social and environmental aspects and by mediating an appropriate balance of interests. The KÖSTER BAUCHEMIE AG voluntarily contributes within the limit of its abilities to the welfare and sustainable development at all locations where it operates. It aligns itself with universally held ethical values and principles, in particular to integrity, honesty, and respect for human dignity.

2. Scope

This CoC is valid for all countries, where the KÖSTER BAUCHEMIE AG has subsidiaries and business units. The KÖSTER BAUCHEMIE AG commits, within its means and scope, to promote adherence to this CoC by its suppliers and ask them to do the same in their supply chains.

3. Fundamental Principles

The KÖSTER BAUCHEMIE AG proactively works towards the sustainable observation and adherence to the values and principles mentioned below:

3.1    Adherence with the law
The KÖSTER BAUCHEMIE AG abides by the laws and other regulations in effect in the countries where it operates. For countries with a weak institutional framework, it will carefully examine which good business practices from its home country should be applied to support responsible corporate management.

3.2    Integrity and corporate governance
The KÖSTER BAUCHEMIE AG aligns itself with universally held ethical values and principles, in particular to integrity, transparency, honesty, respect for human dignity, openness, and non-discrimination of race, ethnicity, gender, religion or ideology, disability, age, or sexual identity.

The KÖSTER BAUCHEMIE AG rejects corruption and bribery as stated in the relevant UN Convention (UN Convention against corruption in 2003, in force since 2005). It promotes integrity, responsible leadership as well as company accountability and takes appropriate steps to prevent the direct or indirect commitment of the following criminal acts:

theft, embezzlement, fraud, disloyalty, forgery of documents, anti-competitive agreements and betrayal of company and trade secrets, unauthorized use of templates or instructions of technical nature, passive and active corruption in business operations, giving disproportionate benefits to employees or contractual partners or receiving of such  favors and benefits.

The KÖSTER BAUCHEMIE AG pursues reputable and recognized business practices and fair competition, in particular with compliance with antitrust and competition law requirements. 

3.3    Consumer interests
With regard to consumer interests, the KÖSTER BAUCHEMIE AG abides by the applicable regulations for consumer protection.

3.4    Communication
The KÖSTER BAUCHEMIE AG communicates openly and conversationally about the requirements of this CoC and its implementation with employees, customers, suppliers, and other stakeholders.

All documents and records are duly produced. They will not be unfairly changed or destroyed and will be stored properly. Trade and industry secrets of business partners are handled sensitively and confidentially and will not be passed on or made accessible to third parties without authorization.

3.5    Human rights and labor conditions
The KÖSTER BAUCHEMIE AG is committed to promoting human rights. It respects human rights as stated in the Human Rights Charter of the United Nations (General explanation of human rights, UN Resolution 217 A (III) from 1948). Furthermore, the KÖSTER BAUCHEMIE AG abides by the following core labor standards of the ILO (International Labor Organization) to the extent referenced herein below:

3.5.1    Privacy and data protection
Privacy including personal data is protected.

3.5.2    Health and safety
Healthy and safety at work are protected by ensuring a safe and healthy work environment in order to prevent accidents and injury.

3.5.3    Protection from harassment
Employees are protected from bodily punishment and from physical, sexual, psychological or verbal harassment or abuse.

3.5.4    Freedom of opinion
Freedom of opinion and freedom of expression are granted and protected.

3.5.5    Prohibition of child labor
The prohibition of child labor, i.e. employment of persons younger than 15 years, is observed, as long as local legal requirements do not specify a higher age limit and as long as no exceptions are permitted (ILO Convention Nr. 138 from 1973 and ILO Convention Nr. 182 from 1999).

3.5.6    Prohibition of forced labor
The prohibition of forced labor of any kind is observed (ILO Convention Nr. 29 from 1930 and ILO Convention Nr. 105 from 1957).

3.5.7    Remuneration
Work standards concerning remuneration especially in regard to the level of remuneration will be observed according to applicable laws and regulations (ILO Convention Nr. 100 from 1951).

3.5.8    Employee rights
Employee rights of freedom of association, freedom of assembly, and collective bargaining are respected to the extent that this is legally permitted and possible in the respective country (ILO Convention Nr. 87 from 1948 and ILO Convention Nr. 98 from 1949)

3.5.9    Prohibition of discrimination
Employees will be treated in a non-discriminatory way (ILO Convention Nr. 111 from 1958).

3.5.10    Working hours
KÖSTER BAUCHEMIE AG will abide by labor standards concerning maximum permitted time of work.

3.6    Environment protection
KÖSTER BAUCHEMIE AG complies with the regulations and standards for environmental protection that apply to its business and acts in an environmentally conscious way at all locations as based on the principles of the Rio Declaration (The 27 principles of the “Rio Declaration on Environment and Development” from 1992 as the result of the UN Conference on Environment and Development in Rio de Janeiro).

3.7    Community Service
The KÖSTER BAUCHEMIE AG contributes to the social and economic development of the countries and regions where it conducts business and promotes appropriate volunteer activities of its employees.

3.8    Implementation and enforcement
The KÖSTER BAUCHEMIE AG shall take all appropriate and reasonable effort to continuously apply the principles and values described in this CoC. Contractual partners shall be informed about essential measures upon request and on the basis of reciprocity so that it becomes observable how keeping these measures is fundamentally guaranteed. Disclosure of industrial or trade secrets or any other information related to competition or otherwise sensitive information may not be claimed.

Aurich, 20. February 2015

KÖSTER BAUCHEMIE AG

 

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