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International Documents on Corporate Responsibility

Edited by Stephen Tully

International Documents on Corporate Responsibility includes the principal international, regional and national instruments drafted by intergovernmental organisations or states as well as codes of conduct formulated by industry associations, trade unions and non-governmental organisations. The coverage includes the fields of human rights, international criminal and environmental law, labour standards, international trade, armed conflict, sustainable development, corruption, consumer protection and corporate governance. Each document is accompanied by a brief explanatory commentary outlining the historical origins of the instrument, the principal actors involved, controversial negotiation issues, applicable implementation procedure, and identifies further reference material.
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Chapter 114: The Asian Pacific Economic Cooperation (APEC) Forum: Business Code of Conduct, 1999


Commentary: APEC is ‘the primary international organization for promoting open trade and economic cooperation among 21 member economies around the Pacific Rim’. The APEC Business Code (available through APECForumBusinessCodeofConduct.html) was initiated by business leaders from APEC States. It seeks greater transparency and predictability within both the public and private sectors. The Code articulates seven standards for corporate conduct intended to supplement existing codes of conduct and identifies specific issues for company action. It also recommends policy measures for APEC governments. International and Local Communities: A company must recognize its responsibilities toward the international and local communities within which it operates and the individuals that make up those communities; Respect for Laws: A company must respect international and domestic rules and recognize that some behaviour, although legal, may still have adverse consequences; Stakeholder Responsibility: A company must recognize the rights of stakeholders as established by laws and encourage active co-operation between companies and stakeholders in creating wealth, jobs, and the sustainability of financially sound enterprises; Responsibility for the Environment: A company must protect and, where possible, improve the environment within which it operates, promote sustainable development and prevent the wasteful use of natural resources; Free and Fair Competition: A company must support free and fair competition in our industries and avoid anti-competitive actions; Company Governance: A company should implement a company governance framework that ensures timely and accurate disclosure on all material matters regarding the company; Illicit Actions: A company must not participate in or condone extortion, bribery, money laundering,...

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