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Initiative aims to foster ethical business practices in region
September 30, 2017, 2:36 pm

Corruption, lack of accountability and transparency, as well as other unethical business practices are immense challenges to doing business in any part of the world; it is no different among the Gulf Cooperation Council (GCC) states.

According to the World Economic Forum, corruption increases the cost of doing business by up to 10 percent on average. With growing awareness of the advantages of integrity in the workplace, business entities around the world are seeking to improve and formalise corporate integrity processes. In the GCC region, multiple private and public sector organizations are realizing the importance of implementing strong integrity practices for the success of their businesses.

In 2015, the Pearl Initiative, a Gulf business-led organisation began a program of collaborative action to foster a culture of accountability and transparency among corporates in the region. The initiative was launched with a grant from the integrity initiative of German global conglomerate Siemens.

The program aims to raise awareness and encourage adoption of business integrity best practices amongst business leaders and students across the GCC region. The initiative supports the implementation of higher standards in areas such as corporate governance, anti-corruption best practices, inclusive management and boards, corporate reporting best practices and ethical leadership development.

As part of its program, the Pearl Initiative recently hosted a roundtable discussion in partnership with Siemens to explore the impact and future of integrity practices in the region. The roundtable panel discussion featured Herbert Klausner CEO, Siemens Kuwait, Wassim Ghazale, Director, Fraud Investigation & Dispute Services, Ernst & Young, and Ahmed Kiswani, Head of Corporate Governance, Risk and Compliance, Boursa Kuwait.

In her opening remarks, Carla Koffel, Executive Director of the Pearl Initiative, highlighted the extent of corruption around the world, the adverse impact it has on business, as well as the potential damage bribery and corruption can cause to long-term profitability.

For his part, Mr. Klausner said: “We recognise the value of advancing transparency and good governance in business and have chosen the Pearl Initiative as one of the Siemens Integrity Initiative partners to address the real impact of corruption.

The roundtable offered a dynamic platform for leadership teams across organisations to examine the latest corruption trends and debate the actual effectiveness of universally accepted best practices, the event also reviewed cost-effective methods that organisations can introduce to enhance their resilience in overcoming corruption.





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