Business ethics and compliance

Our corporate behaviour

In addition to adhering to and promoting good corporate governance, ACWA Power supports exemplary corporate behaviour by adopting a stringent compliance approach to ensure that we adopt the highest standards of ethics, conduct business with reputable third-parties and comply with international best practice.

Our compliance approach

One of the most important factors for the success of any organisation is its compliance with laws, rules and regulations. Compliance protects the Company’s reputation and credibility, serves shareholders’ interests, ensures customer satisfaction and reduces litigation. Compliance is a comprehensive and multi-aspect responsibility involving all parties in a company; it starts with the Board of Directors and senior management and ends with all employees and contractors, each according to the authority and responsibilities entrusted to them.

ACWA Power has accomplished high standards of ethics and integrity in all aspects of our business conduct. We are committed to complying with the applicable legislation and obligations in force in the countries where we operate. To facilitate this objective, the Company has developed and implemented a Compliance Management Framework, which is intended to demonstrate the Company’s commitment, in the clearest possible terms, as follows:

  • Ensuring the highest standards of ethics and compliance with all applicable laws, regulations, rules and policies
  • Detecting and swiftly correcting identified compliance gaps
  • Eliminating misconduct and other wrongdoing

The Compliance Management Framework lays down the policy guidelines and the detailed compliance practices to be implemented.

Communication and training procedures on anti-corruption policies and procedures for employees

ACWA Power has in place an anti-corruption and anti-bribery framework setting out the Company’s commitment to conducting its business ethically and in compliance with all applicable domestic and foreign anti-bribery and anti-corruption laws and regulations.

The objectives of this company policy are to:

  1. Ensure that ACWA Power staff are aware of their obligations and the need to remain vigilant in the fight against bribery and corruption;
  2. Set out the scope, processes and controls required to mitigate any risk related to bribery/corruption within the Company;
  3. Set out the responsibilities of ACWA Power, and all individuals who work for ACWA Power, in observing and upholding the Company’s position on bribery and corruption;
  4. Provide information and guidance to those individuals working for ACWA Power on how to recognise and deal with bribery and corruption issues;
  5. Expand on the Company’s commitment to prohibit bribery and corruption which is generally set out in the Company’s Code of Business Conduct & Ethics Policy (the Code of Conduct);
  6. Establish and apply high standards for hiring employees; and
  7. Provide assistance to all stakeholders to recognise, report and deal with bribery and corruption issues, as well as understand their responsibilities.

Flowing from this policy ACWA Power developed a dedicated e-Learning module which is part of the mandatory compliance courses employees have to attend on annual basis.

Due diligence procedures of new business partners and suppliers on anti-corruption

ACWA Power is committed to conducting its business ethically, in compliance with the applicable laws and regulations in force in the countries in which we operate and only with partners who comply with the rules of integrity and the values upheld by the Company. In this context, due to the increasingly complex business regulations worldwide, it is essential for ACWA Power to entertain business exclusively with partners of good repute, thus ensuring mitigation of third-parties related risks. ACWA Power performs due diligence screening on third-parties before any agreements are entered into, thus ensuring that potential risks such as fraud, corruption, bribery, money laundering and similar malpractices, flowing from these relationships, are responsibly evaluated and managed in accordance with the general principles set out in ACWA Power’s Code of Conduct and Ethics policy (Code of Conduct), in the Anti-Money Laundering (AML) policy and in the Anti-Bribery and Anti-Corruption (ABC) policy.

The Due Diligence and Know Your Customer (KYC) Process is comprised of the following steps:

ACWA Power has in place a compliance function with oversight over the whole organisation, which supports the business in managing applicable regulatory risks.

The Company makes no monetary contributions to political campaigns.

ACWA Power

Our Code of Conduct

ACWA Power strives to offer a secure and positive work environment to encourage its employees to work to the very best of their abilities but, at the same time, expects employees to portray certain ethical and cultural values and to project an image of integrity and professionalism.

The Company has implemented a Code of Conduct and Ethics (the ‘Code’), which sets down key guidelines and compliance practices which all employees are expected to observe, wherever they are located or operate. The Code is a forward-looking document and outlines the ethical responsibilities that will grow our organisation, reputation and business.

It aims to provide guidance on general conduct in order to maintain harmonious working relations internally, with clients and other stakeholders, in line with the laws of the relevant jurisdiction and ACWA Power’s values, ethics and corporate policies.

To help foster awareness of the code, we have developed two mandatory e-learning modules, Making Ethical Decisions and Code of Ethics Policy, which offer guidance in an interactive and engaging way to help employees gain a better understanding of the guidelines and practices set out in the code and so adhere to the highest ethical standards.

The above training is ongoing and is mandatory for all employees to complete before the end of the first quarter of 2022.

Engaging with trusted partners

With business regulations worldwide becoming increasingly complex, it is essential for ACWA Power to entertain business exclusively with partners of good repute, to ensure that third-party risk can be mitigated.

In view of our global expansion, we have implemented a thorough Know Your Customer (KYC) process, so risk-based due diligence on third-parties can be conducted before agreements are entered into. The process helps reduce potential risks such as fraud, corruption, bribery, money laundering and similar malpractices.

Being a responsible global corporate citizen

ACWA Power is committed to conducting its business ethically and in compliance with all applicable domestic and foreign anti-money laundering, counter terrorist financing, anti-bribery and anti-corruption laws and regulations.

Our policies in this regard help to meet the following objectives:

  • Ensure that employees are aware of their obligations and the need to remain vigilant in the fight against bribery, corruption, money laundering and terrorist financing.
  • Set out the scope, processes and controls required to mitigate any risk related to bribery, corruption, money laundering and terrorist financing within the Company.
  • Set out the responsibilities of ACWA Power, and those who work for the Company, in observing and upholding our position on bribery, corruption, money laundering and terrorist financing.
  • Provide information and guidance on how to recognise and deal with bribery, corruption, money laundering and terrorist financing related issues and assist stakeholders in reporting the same.
Global corporate citizen

Our whistle-blowing programme

At ACWA Power, our commitment to integrity and transparency extends to implementing an efficient and confidential whistle-blowing programme, which enables any employee or third-party to report concerns through dedicated channels.

A dedicated Compliance line provides a mechanism for the confidential and anonymous submission of concerns through an independent third-party, Ethics Point, which is accessible at any time.

ACWA Power is committed to conducting its business with the highest standards of ethics and integrity by treating employees and partners with utmost respect and professionalism, fostering a culture of compliance and accountability for own actions, and promoting an environment where employees, third-parties and stakeholders are encouraged to raise their concerns confidently regarding any unethical behaviour or any wrongdoing in the Company.

As part of that commitment, we have recently revised and rolled out the whistle-blower policy. Flowing from this policy, we are now rolling out the revised whistle-blower procedure, which, together with the whistle-blower policy, constitutes the whistle-blower programme at ACWA Power.

The purpose of the whistle-blower procedure is to define the processes and actions that must be followed to blow the whistle and report identified concerns through dedicated channels.

The main objectives of this procedure are to:

  • Raise awareness on the whistle-blower programme in place at ACWA Power,
  • Explain the importance of reporting serious concerns,
  • Explain who is a whistle-blower and when to blow the whistle,
  • Identify the types of concerns to be reported,
  • List the commitment expected from whistle-blowers,
  • Identify channels available to report concerns,
  • Provide an overview on the mechanism to investigate and remedy any wrongdoing,
  • Set out the key performance indicators (KPI) of the whistle-blower programme.

This procedure should be read in conjunction with ACWA Power’s whistle-blower policy and code of conduct and ethics policy.

This whistle-blower procedure applies to all employees of ACWA Power, including business units and wholly owned subsidiaries.

Our commitment to human rights

ACWA Power places great emphasis on treating employees and individuals in the communities in which we operate and throughout our supply chain with dignity and respect. Where we do not have managerial control, we expect and require compliance with this policy. We regularly review and update our policies and procedures proactively to identify, address and respond to unfavourable human rights issues with which we are possibly involved. We are dedicated to complying with the pertinent laws and implement controls wherever we operate. Where national law and international human rights standards differ, we adopt the higher standard.

Among the broader human rights issues identified, we consider the following as crucial and non-negotiable:

  • Providing access to grievance mechanisms,
  • Supporting access to water and sanitation,
  • Preventing child labour, modern slavery, forced labour and human trafficking,
  • Ensuring a decent living wage and income,
  • Ensuring safety and health,
  • Empowering and supporting women.

Our disclosure and transparency approach

ACWA Power’s commitment to transparency is long-standing and weaved into our fabric. Since our listing on the Kingdom’s main stock exchange, Tadawul, in 2021, we must also comply with Capital Market Authority laws and regulations.

We have implemented a disclosure and transparency mechanism to identify, assess and, if needed, disclose to the public, any material development originating as part of our business that might affect the Company’s financial position, its ESG rating or evaluation. This is in compliance with the specific provisions set out in the Rules on the Offer of Securities and Continuing Obligation.