Corruption negatively impacts communities and overall global economic development by channelling funds away from overt towards covert economies. Corruption also erodes the trust necessary to build healthy societies.
Corruption is a systemic issue with customs and practices deeply ingrained in societies and communities. These practices are not easily altered and taking a stand can, in many cases result in commercial losses. In A.P. Moller - Maersk, we work against all forms of corruption including reducing and eliminating facilitation payments, which are commonplace in the shipping and logistics industries. To increase the likelihood of success, we were instrumental in creating a collaborative forum to combat corruption in the maritime industries.
Facilitation payment demands remain a challenge for some parts of our businesses in some parts of the world and they remain a focus area for our anti-corruption compliance programme.
The maritime industry partners to fight corruption
Maersk Line and Maersk Tankers are active members of the Maritime Anti-Corruption Network (MACN), a global business network working for a maritime industry free of all types of corruption. MACN supports a pilot project in Nigeria run together with local authorities and the United Nations Development Programme (UNDP). The aim is to identify and address vulnerable elements in vessel port call processes where corruption is prone to take place.
This includes improving and harmonising public officials’ port clearance procedures. A new complaint mechanism enables companies to file a complaint when faced with improper demands from government officials. Anti-corruption training of selected officials was conducted, and anti-corruption policies have been developed for all relevant agencies.
MACN activities in 2015, where Maersk took a leading role included the planning of integrity training sessions with government officials and a best practice sharing session with port officials from inside and outside Nigeria. Both will take place in early 2016 and the outcomes will be used to develop tools to professionalise ports globally. Also in 2015, Maersk Line took a leading role in a MACN-driven “Say No”-campaign in the Suez Canal to eliminate facilitation payments related to canal transit.