Anti-corruption measures are coming under the spotlight of two European construction associations in the lead up to a meeting about a worldwide standard on anti-bribery management systems.

FIEC (the European Construction Industry Federation) and EIC (European International Contractors) are asking for “moral and organisational reciprocity”.

They say that in defending the interests of European construction firms at European and international level, they are committed actively to contributing to anti-corruption and anti-bribery policies and measures worldwide.

They are highlighting the forthcoming worldwide standard on anti-bribery management systems (ISO 37001) which is being drafted by a technical committee of the International Organization of Standardization (ISO/PC 278).

Preparing for the final meeting of ISO PC/278 in Mexico this month, FIEC/EIC representative Per Nielsen, of Swedish company NCC, stressed that “forthcoming guidelines should clarify this ‘moral and organisational reciprocity’ as one of the necessary conditions for success in practice.”

Explaining the rationale of this request, Nielsen said, “Considering that by definition, corruption/bribery needs at least two consenting parties, all these efforts would not achieve the envisaged aims if measures such as the forthcoming ISO standard were not used by all public and private bodies alike.”

He said that a client requiring proof from contractors that ISO anti-bribery management systems were in place should show their own commitment and credibility by including the corresponding proof for their own organisation.

Nielsen added, “On this basis, I think it would be logical to request international financing institutions and procuring agencies having a certified ISO anti-bribery management system in place to require in their procurement procedures that tenderers also be ISO 37001 certified, in order to be qualified for submitting bids.

“We will address this specific aspect with our member federations in the discussions on how to make best use of this new ISO standard.”

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