- Sustainable brands are more successful
- Joining forces to fight corruption
- The Rule of Law Initiative: on the right path but still a long way to go
- Transparency in healthcare: Science-fiction or a real possibility?
- Anti-bribery and corruption: non-compliance has a cost
- Delivering public value: Trust in business comes from ethical values
- Via Bona Slovakia: searching for accountable companies and their stories
- Responsible business modernizes Central European economies
- Following the right road…
- Finding pride and meaning in CSR
- AmCham Real Estate Committee
CSR and Transparency
The message we hear from companies is clear – we have to consider
sustainability issues in our day-to-day business decisions. It is no
longer a question of why or if, but how. How can we get it right? How
can we address the correct issues? How will our environmental and social
performance goals contribute to our business goals? Is there a
connection between our economic success and creating a positive impact
on society? These are all valid questions, and there is not one
universal answer. But one thing is clear – customers want sustainable
products and ethical and responsible companies are more successful.
According to reports of the EU as well as domestic polls, corruption ranks among the most significant problems effecting ordinary citizens as well as the business environment, including foreign investors, in Slovakia.
One of AmCham’s key initiatives of 2015 focused on strengthening the rule of law in Slovakia, with the aim of making the local business environment more transparent, predictable and competitive, and to positively impact Slovakia’s image abroad. The Initiative introduced its proposal to leading public officials in February 2015. To summarize the Initiative’s yearly progress, Igor Kottman, AmCham’s President, talked to us about its recent achievements as well as further plans.
Transparency is not only a buzzword promoted by watchdogs and NGOs. It is a condition crucial for successful development of the business environment. Transparency comes hand in hand with predictability and legal certainty: two prerequisites considered by every international investor. The healthcare sector is no exception.
Corruption continues to corrode the global economy and if Slovak enterprises want to remain competitive, they need to have adequate and efficient anti-bribery and corruption (ABC) compliance programs in place. Not having them could have many negative impacts including lost opportunities to draw new foreign investment, or the loss of competitive edge. There’s a lot at stake.
It is clear that, historically, accountants have been greatly relied on by business. This is because accounting is the language of business and finance and it is the accountant’s skills and abilities that instill trust.
The Pontis Foundation is once again looking for companies in Slovakia that do responsible business and undertake activities that can inspire others. We are looking for winners of Via Bona Slovakia in 2015 which promote transparency and care for the community and the environment.
The number of Central European companies implementing strategic solutions that increase their contribution to sustainable social and economic development is on the rise.
Topics related to the rule of law in Slovakia have been resonating among Amcham members for a long time and were addressed through several events and committee initiatives. The efforts culminated in the Rule of Law initiative which was launched in 2014. VIA IURIS has been active in this field for over two decades. We are glad that Zuzana Čaputová, who has been involved with VIA IURIS since 2001, agreed to share some of the valuable experience and knowledge gained through the years.
Mondelēz Intenational’s Shared Services Center in Bratislava is a strong supporter of CSR. Our long term strategy is to support schools and preschool facilities for children from lower income social backgrounds as well as handicapped children and adults.
As AmCham is truly a membership-oriented organization, and very much values input from its members, another expansion of its policy activities came near the end of the year when AmCham launched its newly-formed Real Estate Committee. This initiative came at the request of several AmCham members interested in accessing AmCham’s extensive network to directly address a variety of issues impacting companies in the broad real estate business sector. Some similar topics are partially covered by other committees, but numerous legislative changes in this field taking place over the past few years have created a demand to address them with full focus through a separate committee. This will provide a new platform for AmCham members from the real estate field to communicate with the Government and the respective ministries. The committee will be chaired by Tatiana Prokopová of Squire Patton Boggs, who introduced its agenda for the near future.