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Zero tolerance for corruption

At Ericsson, we have zero tolerance for bribery and corruption. This guiding principle is embedded at the highest levels of the company and implemented through a comprehensive set of policies and processes.

We recognize the threat corruption poses to sustainable economic and social development. That is one reason why we endorse the United Nations’ Sustainable Development Goals, which in SDG16 set a clear goal to reduce bribery and corruption in all forms and call for more accountable organizations.

With customers in 180 countries, many of which are considered at high risk of corruption, we are aware that prevention and accountability are paramount. That is why we are investing considerable time and resources—continuously and systematically—to strengthen our anti-corruption processes. And we are attentive and responsive to improvements that stakeholders and authorities may believe are necessary. Our anti-corruption program, headed by the group’s Chief Compliance Officer, is evaluated annually by the Audit Committee of the Board of Directors. It has six central elements:

  • Top-level commitment
  • Risk assessment
  • Due diligence of business partners
  • Policies/directives and process
  • Implementation (including training and communication)
  • Monitoring and review of the program

Top-level commitment

Our zero tolerance for corruption has strong top management support. Our approach to anti-corruption is continuously reinforced at employee and executive-level meetings. All Ericsson employees must periodically review and acknowledge the Code of Business Ethics.

Risk assessment

Corruption risks are evaluated as part of group risk assessment performed by all units to ensure that they are aligned with our strategy and targets. The Compliance Office also performs corruption risk assessment continuously. Furthermore, anti-corruption has been a focus of the Corporate Audit and has been covered by selected audits during the year.

Automated anti-corruption screening tool

We continue the global rollout of an automated anti-corruption screening tool to undertake due diligence of suppliers. In 2017 over 17,600 suppliers have been screened by this tool.

Training and awareness

By the end of 2017, more than 92,950 active employees had completed an anti-corruption e-learning course aimed at raising awareness of risks, dilemmas and appropriate courses of action. In order to ensure fair and ethical practices throughout our supply chain, anti-corruption training for suppliers is available in 16 languages.

Reporting concerns

Through Ericsson’s Compliance Line, an independent whistleblower tool, employees and external parties can report suspected violations of law or the Code of Business Ethics via phone or a secure website. This line is available 24/7, 365 days a year and enables people to report in 188 countries and in over 75 languages.

A united front

Since 2012, we have been a signatory to the World Economic Forum Partnering Against Corruption Initiative and its Principles for Countering Corruption, aimed at raising business standards and contributing to greater transparency and accountability. The PACI Principles commit signatory companies to a zero tolerance policy towards bribery, and an effective program to counter bribery and ensure its implementation.

For more information on anti-corruption please download the latest
Sustainability and Corporate Responsibility report 2017.

Anti-corruption online training for suppliers is available here