Anti-Corruption Compliance Policy
BACKGROUND AND/OR OBJECTIVE
Paavak and its subsidiaries (collectively, the “Company”) conducts its business in certain international locations. This can present the unique challenge of trying to observe local business customs while still complying with applicable U.S. and other laws prohibiting corruption. The U.S. Foreign Corrupt Practices
Act (“FCPA”) and other anti-corruption laws prohibit any payment or offer of payment to a “foreign official” for the purpose of influencing that official to assist in obtaining or retaining business for a company. The Company has established this policy in order to ensure that all employees of the Company, its agents, and its affiliates are aware of the FCPA and engage in ethical and legal practices. This policy is focused on the FCPA because of its broad application; however, it is the Company’s policy to comply with all applicable anti-corruption laws.
No Company director, officer, employee, or agent has authority to give or to offer anything of value to a “foreign official” or government employee, or to any person while knowing that all or a portion of such money or thing of value will be offered, given, or promised, directly or indirectly, to any foreign official or government employee, for the purpose of inducing that person to affect any government act or decision in a manner that will assist the Company or any of its subsidiaries or divisions in obtaining or retaining business. Furthermore, every officer, employee, and agent is obligated by this policy and federal law to keep books, records, and accounts that accurately and fairly reflect all transactions in and dispositions of Company assets.
OVERVIEW OF THE FCPA AND THIS POLICY
Anti-Bribery Provisions. The FCPA generally applies to all US corporations, partnerships, and other business entities, as well as all persons acting on behalf of those entities. Regardless of the applicability of the FCPA or its jurisdictional reach, this policy applies to the Company and its subsidiaries, as well as its officers, directors, employees, agents, and shareholders.
The FCPA and this policy prohibit any payment or offer of payment to a “foreign official” for the purpose of influencing that official to assist in obtaining or retaining business for a company. The FCPA and this policy apply to any act or event that is “in furtherance of” a payment to a foreign official. Further, the “payment” clause of the FCPA is broadly construed. It covers not only the actual payment of money but also an offer, promise or authorization of the payment of money and an offer, gift, promise or authorization of the giving of “anything of value.” The FCPA and this policy also apply to payments to foreign political parties, officials of foreign political parties, and candidates for foreign political office.
Record Keeping Requirements. In addition to its anti-bribery provisions, the FCPA also imposes certain accounting requirements on companies. Specifically, the FCPA requires that a company maintain books, records, and accounts that, in reasonable detail, accurately reflect the transactions and dispositions of that company. This policy incorporates these record keeping requirements. In order to comply with these requirements, it is imperative that Company employees, agents and others acting on the Company’s behalf maintain complete and accurate records with respect to all transactions and dispositions undertaken on behalf of the Company.
The consequences of failing to comply with the FCPA are very serious. Violation of the FCPA and related laws by a Company employee can result in millions of dollars in fines against the Company and can subject the employee to prosecution, criminal fines, and imprisonment, as well as disciplinary action by the Company, including dismissal. Note that the FCPA states that fines and penalties imposed upon individuals may not be paid directly or indirectly by any corporation for which they may have acted.
It is the responsibility of all members of senior management to supervise, monitor and train the employees under their supervision to ensure that the purposes of this policy are fulfilled.
It is the responsibility of each employee to comply with this policy and with procedures and guidelines established in furtherance of this policy. Failure to comply with the policy is grounds for disciplinary action, up to and including termination.
The following guidance is provided to employees and anyone acting on behalf of the Company to clarify how this policy applies:
- Except as expressly provided elsewhere in this statement of policy, no payment or gift of any kind may be promised, offered, or made to any of the following people: a “foreign official,” which is defined as any officer or employee of a foreign government or any department, agency, or instrumentality thereof, or of a public international organization, or any person acting in an official capacity for or on behalf of any such government or department, agency, or instrumentality, or for or on behalf of any such public international organization; any foreign political party or official thereof or any candidate for foreign political office; or any person acting on behalf of a foreign official, a foreign political party or official thereof, or a candidate for foreign political office.
- If you have any doubt about whether a person is a foreign official, raise the question with the member of senior management responsible for your function in the Company. The senior managers will be responsible for obtaining advice from the legal department.
- Complete and accurate records sufficient to show compliance with the above rules, the FCPA generally, and any other Company policies must be maintained at all times. This means, among other things, that when a payment is intended to go to a particular party or entity for a particular purpose, the records with respect to that payment must accurately reflect the true recipient and the true purpose of the payment.
Facilitating Payments. In certain parts of the world it is common for companies to pay low level government employees to expedite or secure the performance of a routine governmental action, such as to obtain a visa or a permit. Though these payments may be customary in certain parts of the world, these payments may violate U.S. law. You must obtain approval from the legal department for any payment to any government official, no matter how common or ordinary the payment may appear.
Retaining Agents. Because the actions of a third party acting as an agent or representative of a company can expose that company to liability under the FCPA, great care should be taken in the retention of such agents and representatives. A sufficient investigation should be undertaken to ensure that any such representative does not intend to engage in any improper practices. In determining whether to engage a particular representative, factors such as the representative’s reputation and qualifications, the manner and reasonableness of compensation, the relationship, if any, between the owners and employees of the representative and a foreign official, the presence or absence of any secret partners, the willingness of the representative to fully disclose its relationship with us and the legality of the relationship under local law must be considered.
Government-Owned Businesses. In many countries it is a common practice for government officials to own or operate business enterprises. While the FCPA and related laws do not prohibit legitimate business relationships with business enterprises owned or controlled by foreign officials, great care must be taken to avoid any association with any such enterprise in circumstances that might constitute an evasion of the FCPA. If you intend to engage in business with a company that is owned by one or more government official or entities, you must contact the legal department for approval.
Retention of Professionals. No person acting on behalf of the Company may enter into any transaction with agents, contractors, consultants, lawyers or other persons that is intended or designed to permit such persons to circumvent currency, tax or other laws of a foreign country. Any transaction that has the appearance of permitting any person to circumvent such laws must be avoided. Particular care must be taken in respect to “split payments” (i.e., payments for services that are made outside the country in which the services are performed, other than payments in the country in which the provider of the services is incorporated and has an established presence, or payments inside the country in other than the local currency).
Any transaction, no matter how seemingly insignificant, that might give rise to a violation of the FCPA or this policy must promptly be reported to the General Counsel. Such report may also be made through the Company’s Ethics Point confidential whistleblower reporting system. All such reports will be treated as confidential and will be shared with authorized individuals only on a need-to-know basis.
As long as a report is made honestly and in good faith, the Company will take no adverse action against any person based on the making of such a report. Employees should note that the failure to report known or suspected wrongdoing of which an employee has knowledge may, by itself, subject that employee to disciplinary action
Any questions concerning the FCPA and related reporting requirements may be addressed to the legal department.
Paavak Industries Private Limited
SCO 69, 3rd Floor Sector 17D, Chandigarh
Code of Ethics and Business Conduct
Build Trust and Credibility
The success of our business is dependent on the trust and confidence we earn from our employees, customers and associates. We gain credibility by adhering to our commitments, displaying honesty and integrity and reaching company goals solely through honorable conduct. It is easy to say what we must do, but the proof is in our actions. Ultimately, we will be judged on what we do.
When considering any action, it is wise to ask: will this build trust and credibility for Paavak? Will it help create a working environment in which Paavak can succeed over the long term? Is the commitment I am making one I can follow through with? The only way we will maximize trust and credibility is by answering “yes” to those questions and by working every day to build our trust and credibility.
Respect for the Individual
We all deserve to work in an environment where we are treated with dignity and respect. Paavak is committed to creating such an environment because it brings out the full potential in each of us, which, in turn, contributes directly to our business success. We cannot afford to let anyone’s talents go to waste.
Paavak is an equal employment/affirmative action employer and is committed to providing a workplace that is free of discrimination of all types from abusive, offensive or harassing behavior. Any employee who feels harassed or discriminated against should report the incident to his or her manager or to human resources.
Create a Culture of Open and Honest Communication
At Paavak everyone should feel comfortable to speak his or her mind, particularly with respect to ethics concerns. Managers have a responsibility to create an open and supportive environment where employees feel comfortable raising such questions. We all benefit tremendously when employees exercise their power to prevent mistakes or wrongdoing by asking the right questions at the right times.
Paavak will investigate all reported instances of questionable or unethical behavior. In every instance where improper behavior is found to have occurred, the company will take appropriate action. We will not tolerate retaliation against employees who raise genuine ethics concerns in good faith.
Set Tone at the Top
Management has the added responsibility for demonstrating, through their actions, the importance of this Code. In any business, ethical behavior does not simply happen; it is the product of clear and direct communication of behavioral expectations, modeled from the top and demonstrated by example. Again, ultimately, our actions are what matters.
To make our Code work, managers must be responsible for promptly addressing ethical questions or concerns raised by employees and for taking the appropriate steps to deal with such issues. Managers should not consider employees’ ethics concerns as threats or challenges to their authority, but rather as another encouraged form of business communication. At Paavak, we want the ethics dialogue to become a natural part of daily work.
Uphold the Law
Paavak’s commitment to integrity begins with complying with laws, rules and regulations where we do business. Further, each of us must have an understanding of the company policies, laws, rules and regulations that apply to our specific roles. If we are unsure of whether a contemplated action is permitted by law or Paavak policy, we should seek the advice from the resource expert. We are responsible for preventing violations of law and for speaking up if we see possible violations.
We are dedicated to ethical, fair and vigorous competition. We will sell Paavak products and services based on their merit, superior quality, functionality and competitive pricing. We will make independent pricing and marketing decisions and will not improperly cooperate or coordinate our activities with our competitors. We will not offer or solicit improper payments or gratuities in connection with the purchase of goods or services for Paavak or the sales of its products or services, nor will we engage or assist in unlawful boycotts of particular customers.
It is important that we respect the property rights of others. We will not acquire or seek to acquire improper means of a competitor’s trade secrets or other proprietary or confidential information. We will not engage in unauthorized use, copying, distribution or alteration of software or other intellectual property.
We will not selectively disclose (whether in one-on-one or small discussions, meetings, presentations, proposals or otherwise) any material nonpublic information with respect to Paavak, its securities, business operations, plans, financial condition, results of operations or any development plan. We should be particularly vigilant when making presentations or proposals to customers to ensure that our presentations do not contain material nonpublic information.
Health and Safety
Paavak is dedicated to maintaining a healthy environment.
Conflicts of Interest
Avoid Conflicts of Interest
We must avoid any relationship or activity that might impair, or even appear to impair, our ability to make objective and fair decisions when performing our jobs. At times, we may be faced with situations where the business actions we take on behalf of Paavak may conflict with our own personal or family interests. We owe a duty to Paavak to advance its legitimate interests when the opportunity to do so arises. We must never use Paavak property or information for personal gain or personally take for ourselves any opportunity that is discovered through our position with Paavak
Determining whether a conflict of interest exists is not always easy to do. Employees with a conflict of interest question should seek advice from management. Before engaging in any activity, transaction or relationship that might give rise to a conflict of interest, employees must seek review from their managers.
Gifts, Gratuities and Business Courtesies
Paavak is committed to competing solely on a merit of our products and services. We should avoid any actions that create a perception that favorable treatment of outside entities by Paavak was sought, received or given in exchange for personal business courtesies. Business courtesies include gifts, gratuities, meals, refreshments, entertainment or other benefits from persons or companies with whom Paavak does or may do business. We will neither give nor accept business courtesies that constitute, or could reasonably be perceived as constituting, unfair business inducements that would violate law, regulation or polices of Paavak or customers, or would cause embarrassment or reflect negatively on Paavak’s reputation.
Accepting Business Courtesies
Most business courtesies offered to us in the course of our employment are offered because of our positions at Paavak. We should not feel any entitlement to accept and keep a business courtesy. Although we may not use our position at Paavak to obtain business courtesies, and we must never ask for them, we may accept unsolicited business courtesies that promote successful working relationships and good will with the firms that Paavak maintains or may establish a business relationship with.
Employees who award contracts or who can influence the allocation of business, who create specifications that result in the placement of business or who participate in negotiation of contracts must be particularly careful to avoid actions that create the appearance of favoritism or that may adversely affect the company’s reputation for impartiality and fair dealing. The prudent course is to refuse a courtesy from a supplier when Paavak is involved in choosing or reconfirming a supplier or under circumstances that would create an impression that offering courtesies is the way to obtain Paavak business.
Meals, Refreshments and Entertainment
We may accept occasional meals, refreshments, entertainment and similar business courtesies that are shared with the person who has offered to pay for the meal or entertainment, provided that:
- They are not inappropriately lavish or excessive.
- The courtesies are not frequent and do not reflect a pattern of frequent acceptance of courtesies from the same person or entity.
- The courtesy does not create the appearance of an attempt to influence business decisions, such as accepting courtesies or entertainment from a supplier whose contract is expiring in the near future.
- The employee accepting the business courtesy would not feel uncomfortable discussing the courtesy with his or her manager or co-worker or having the courtesies known by the public.
Employees may accept unsolicited gifts, other than money, that conform to the reasonable ethical practices of the marketplace, including:
- Flowers, fruit baskets and other modest presents that commemorate a special occasion.
- Gifts of nominal value, such as calendars, pens, mugs, caps and t-shirts (or other novelty, advertising or promotional items).
- Generally, employees may not accept compensation, honoraria or money of any amount from entities with whom Paavak does or may do business.
- Tangible gifts (including tickets to a sporting or entertainment event) that have a market value greater than $100 may not be accepted unless approval is obtained from management.
- Employees with questions about accepting business courtesies should talk to their managers or the HR department
Offering Business Courtesies
Any employee who offers a business courtesy must assure that it cannot reasonably be interpreted as an attempt to gain an unfair business advantage or otherwise reflect negatively upon Paavak. An employee may never use personal funds or resources to do something that cannot be done with Paavak resources. Accounting for business courtesies must be done in accordance with approved company procedures.
Other than to our government customers, for whom special rules apply, we may provide nonmonetary gifts (i.e., company logo apparel or similar promotional items) to our customers. Further, management may approve other courtesies, including meals, refreshments or entertainment of reasonable value, provided that:
- The practice does not violate any law or regulation or the standards of conduct of the recipient’s organization.
- The business courtesy is consistent with industry practice, is infrequent in nature and is not lavish.
- The business courtesy is properly reflected on the books and records of Paavak.
Set Metrics and Report Results Accurately
Accurate Public Disclosures
We will make certain that all disclosures made in financial reports and public documents are full, fair, accurate, timely and understandable. This obligation applies to all employees, including all financial executives, with any responsibility for the preparation for such reports, including drafting, reviewing and signing or certifying the information contained therein. No business goal of any kind is ever an excuse for misrepresenting facts or falsifying records.
Employees should inform Executive Management if they learn that information in any filing or public communication was untrue or misleading at the time it was made or if subsequent information would affect a similar future filing or public communication.
We create, retain and dispose of our company records as part of our normal course of business in compliance with all Paavak policies and guidelines, as well as all regulatory and legal requirements.
All corporate records must be true, accurate and complete, and company data must be promptly and accurately entered in our books in accordance with Paavak’s and other applicable accounting principles.
We must not improperly influence, manipulate or mislead any unauthorized audit, nor interfere with any auditor engaged to perform an internal independent audit of Paavak books, records, processes or internal controls.
Any transaction, no matter how seemingly insignificant, that might give rise to a violation must promptly be reported to the management. Such report may also be made through the
Company’s Ethics Point confidential whistleblower reporting system. All such reports will be treated as confidential and will be shared with authorized individuals only on a need-to-know basis. As long as a report is made honestly and in good faith, the Company will take no adverse action against any person based on the making of such a report. Employees should note that the failure to report known or suspected wrongdoing of which an employee has knowledge may, by itself, subject that employee to disciplinary action.
Promote Substance over Form
At times, we are all faced with decisions we would rather not have to make and issues we would prefer to avoid. Sometimes, we hope that if we avoid confronting a problem, it will simply go away.
At Paavak, we must have the courage to tackle the tough decisions and make difficult choices; secure in the knowledge that Paavak is committed to doing the right thing. At times this will mean doing more than simply what the law requires. Merely because we can pursue a course of action does not mean we should do so.
Although Paavak’s guiding principles cannot address every issue or provide answers to every dilemma, they can define the spirit in which we intend to do business and should guide us in our daily conduct.
Each of us is responsible for knowing and adhering to the values and standards set forth in this Code and for raising questions if we are uncertain about company policy. If we are concerned whether the standards are being met or are aware of violations of the Code, we must contact the management.
Paavak takes seriously the standards set forth in the Code, and violations are cause for disciplinary action up to and including termination of employment.
Confidential and Proprietary Information
Integral to Paavak’s business success is our protection of confidential company information, as well as nonpublic information entrusted to us by employees, customers and other business partners. Confidential and proprietary information includes such things as pricing and financial data, customer names/addresses or nonpublic information about other companies, including current or potential supplier and vendors. We will not disclose confidential and nonpublic information without a valid business purpose and proper authorization.
Use of Company Resources
Company resources, including time, material, equipment and information, are provided for company business use. Nonetheless, occasional personal use is permissible as long as it does not affect job performance or cause a disruption to the workplace.
Employees and those who represent Paavak are trusted to behave responsibly and use good judgment to conserve company resources. Managers are responsible for the resources assigned to their departments and are empowered to resolve issues concerning their proper use.
Generally, we will not use company equipment such as computers, copiers and fax machines in the conduct of an outside business or in support of any religious, political or other outside daily activity, except for company-requested support to nonprofit organizations. We will not solicit contributions nor distribute non-work related materials during work hours.
In order to protect the interests of the Paavak network and our fellow employees, Paavak reserves the right to monitor or review all data and information contained on an employee’s company-issued computer or electronic device, the use of the Internet or Paavak’s intranet. We will not tolerate the use of company resources to create, access, store, print, solicit or send any materials that are harassing, threatening, abusive, sexually explicit or otherwise offensive or inappropriate.
Questions about the proper use of company resources should be directed to your manager.
Do the Right Thing
Several key questions can help identify situations that may be unethical, inappropriate or illegal. Ask yourself:
- Does what I am doing comply with the Paavak guiding principles, Code of Conduct and company policies? Have I been asked to misrepresent information or deviate from normal procedure?
- Would I feel comfortable describing my decision at a staff meeting?
- How would it look if it made the headlines?
- Am I being loyal to my family, my company and myself?
- What would I tell my child to do?
- Is this the right thing to do?
DISCLAIMER OF WARRANTIES
YOUR USE OF THIS WEBSITE IS AT YOUR SOLE RISK. THIS WEBSITE IS PROVIDED “AS IS” “AS AVAILABLE” AND “WITH ALL FAULTS”. TO THE MAXIMUM EXTENT PERMITTED BY LAW, PAAVAK DISCLAIMS ALL WARRANTIES RELATING TO THE WEBSITE, WHETHER EXPRESS, IMPLIED OR STATUTORY, INCLUDING CONDITIONS, REPRESENTATIONS, AND WARRANTIES OF ANY KIND, INCLUDING ANY IMPLIED WARRANTY OR CONDITION OF MERCHANTABILITY, SATISFACTORY QUALITY, FITNESS FOR A PARTICULAR PURPOSE, NONINFRINGEMENT OR WARRANTIES ARISING FROM COURSE OF DEALING OR TRADE USAGE. PAAVAK MAKES NO REPRESENTATIONS, WARRANTIES, CONDITIONS OR GUARANTEES AS TO THE USEFULNESS, QUALITY, SUITABILITY, TRUTH, ACCURACY, OR COMPLETENESS OF THE WEBSITE.
YOU ASSUME ALL RISK FOR ANY DAMAGE TO YOUR COMPUTER SYSTEM OR LOSS OF DATA THAT RESULTS FROM THE USE OF THIS WEBSITE, INCLUDING ANY DAMAGES RESULTING FROM COMPUTER VIRUSES.
DISCLAIMER OF LIABILITY
TO THE MAXIMUM EXTENT PERMITTED BY LAW, NEITHER PAAVAK NOR ANY OF ITS SUBSIDIARIES, AFFILIATES, LICENSORS, PARTNERS, MANAGERS, SHAREHOLDERS, DIRECTORS, OFFICERS, EMPLOYEES, OR OTHER AGENTS SHALL HAVE ANY RESPONSIBILITY OR LIABILITY TO ANY USER OR ITS PRINCIPALS OR AGENTS FOR ANY DAMAGES, WHETHER GENERAL, SPECIAL, DIRECT, INDIRECT, INCIDENTAL, OR CONSEQUENTIAL (INCLUDING, WITHOUT LIMITATION, LOSS OF BUSINESS, REVENUE, PROFITS, GOODWILL, USE, DATA, ELECTRONICALLY TRANSMITTED ORDERS, OR OTHER ECONOMIC ADVANTAGE) WHETHER OR NOT FORESEEABLE AND WHETHER BASED ON CONTRACT, TORT, COMMON LAW, OR ANY OTHER THEORY OF LIABILITY, STATUTE, OR REGULATION. USER EXPRESSLY ACKNOWLEDGES AND AGREES THAT PAAVAK IS PROVIDING ACCESS TO THE WEBSITE IN RELIANCE ON THE DISCLAIMERS AND LIMITATIONS SET FORTH IN THIS POLICY, AND FURTHER ACKNOWLEDGES AND AGREES THAT SUCH LIMITATIONS ARE REASONABLE. IN NO EVENT SHALL PAAVAK ‘S LIABILITY TO USER EXCEED THE FEES ACTUALLY PAID BY USER FOR USE OF THE WEBSITE.
TO THE EXTENT THAT ANY JURISDICTION DOES NOT ALLOW THE EXCLUSION OR LIMITATION OF DIRECT, INCIDENTAL OR CONSEQUENTIAL DAMAGES, PORTIONS OF THE ABOVE LIMITATION OR EXCLUSION MAY NOT APPLY.