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Code of Ethics – Frequently Asked Questions

At Clariant, we know that our decisions and actions have an impact. We show consideration for other people, our environment and the communities around us. We reflect on our behaviors to ensure that what we do is done the right way.

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Do you have rules on how to use company information?

Yes. As a rule, we only use company information for approved company purposes. We classify information according to our internal policies and we do not disclose any information outside the company unless it is classified as ‘public’ or has been approved by an authorized person.

What do you consider as confidential information?

Confidential information includes, but is not limited to, information on Clariant’s business activities, technology, intellectual property, financial position and employees, as well as all information on Clariant’s customers, suppliers and business partners. Clariant’s intellectual property includes not only trade secrets, patents, trademarks and copyrights, but also business, marketing and service plans, as well as technical knowledge.

How do you protect confidential information?

Given the sensitivity, we apply additional care and protection to confidential information. We have to ensure that such information is only accessible to those who have explicitly been given permission to have it and who need it to do their job. This also means that we do not disclose any confidential information to our family members or other persons living in the same household, to our friends or to uninvolved colleagues

Why is information valuable to Clariant?

For Clariant, information at the core of our value generation chain. That is why we see information as an asset that needs to be protected with regard to integrity, confidentiality and availability. In addition, we have obligations toward our shareholders, employees and customers to safeguard any information we store about them.

Why is Data Privacy important?

In many jurisdictions, privacy is considered a fundamental human right, and data protection laws exist to guard that right (e.g. GDPR, etc.). Organizations use data protection practices to demonstrate to their customers and users that they can be trusted with their personal data.

How did Clariant implement these requirements?

The challenge of data privacy is to utilize data while protecting individual's privacy preferences and their personally identifiable information. Clariant needs to be compliant with the EU General Data Protection Regulation and has introduced a Global Privacy Program.

At Clariant, we respect the privacy of all persons that have entrusted us with their personal data, including our employees, business partners and customers. Our Policy establishes common data privacy principles for the protection of personal data within the Clariant Group. The Policy covers all personal data collected, processed, shared or used by Clariant, in any form. It applies to all Clariant Group companies in which Clariant directly or indirectly has the right to direct the management.

What rules should businesses follow to ensure Data Privacy compliance?

Personal data must be:

  • Processed lawfully, fairly and in a transparent manner
  • Collected only for specified, explicit and lawful purposes
  • Adequate, relevant and limited to what is necessary
  • Accurate and kept up to date
  • Kept only for as long as it is needed and no longer
  • Protected in a manner that ensures its security and integrity


What are the penalties for Data Privacy breaches?

The maximum fine a company can face is 4% of their annual global turnover, or €20 million.

What are Data Privacy fundamental rights (extract)?
  • The right to be informed - Individuals have a right to be told what personal data our organisation collects about them, the lawful basis that applies, how their data will be used, and who else it will be shared with. Companies must be completely transparent in how they are using personal data.
  • The right of access - Individuals have the right to obtain a copy of personal information that is held about them. This lets them check how their data is being processed and whether it is lawful.
  • The right of rectification - Individuals are entitled to have personal data rectified if it is inaccurate or incomplete.
  • The right to erasure - Also known as 'the right to be forgotten', this refers to an individual's right to have their personal data deleted or removed in certain circumstances.
Where can I find additional information in on the subject of privacy?

Further information on the subject of privacy can be found via the following link on

Privacy statements for customers, vendors and business partners (
What does responsible communication mean for Clariant?
  • As a global employer and a publicly traded company, we know about the significance of our communication. We communicate in a fact-based, timely way to our stakeholders, in line with the applicable laws and regulations and our own internal guidelines.
  • Clariant pursues open and transparent communications with external stakeholders while adhering to legal and business obligations. We communicate according to a one-voice policy and ensure that non-public information remains non-public. Therefore, it is important that only designated spokespeople provide statements to media or the financial markets on behalf of the company. Spokespeople are authorized either by Group Communications or Investor Relations. If we receive media inquiries, we forward them to Group Communications for further handling. Inquiries from the financial community can only be answered by Investor Relations.
Why should I be careful when disclosing my opinion in my personal social media channels?
  • When we are personally active on social media and speak about Clariant, we need to be mindful of the company’s reputation. Therefore, we do not disclose any confidential or internal information on social media and we make it clear that we are not a company spokesperson.
  • We are polite and do not harass anybody. Engaging in offensive or controversial conversations on our private accounts while having Clariant listed as our employer could result in disciplinary action.
  • We do not post content or personal opinions about an ongoing issue related to Clariant, a public debate, or crisis before checking with Group Communications, Legal, HR or our local HR manager, since readers might interpret this as an official Clariant statement.
Can I give interviews or express my opinion on matters related to Clariant to people outside the organization?
  • No, you should not share any internal and potentially sensitive information with someone outside the company. If approached by the media (even in informal situations), do not share internal information and refer the person to Clariant Media Relations. 
How do you promote an inclusive and diverse environment?

Clariant has defined a roadmap of actions to achieve its 2030 aspirational goals for Diversity, Equity and Inclusion. Those include and are not limited to education of our people leaders, review of our HR policies and processes and support to Employee Resource Groups. More information can be found here: Clariant purpose-led strategy reflected in Diversity, Equity & Inclusion.

How does Clariant treat concerns and complains on discrimination, harassment or mobbing?

If the situation allows, and they feel comfortable in doing so, employees and applicants are encouraged to share their observations with the line/hiring manager.. Alternatively, they should raise their concerns with HR or Compliance. Clariant also offers an Integrity line which is designed to encourage employees to share concerns, anonymously or not, a about a breach of our Code of Ethics and to report it, or to ask compliance-related questions. Managing Compliance related HR investigations includes establishing standards, processes, templates and tools to anticipate, plan for and react with regards to workplace grievances and policy infraction related reports (e.g. Code of Ethics) focusing on HR or people related issues. By partnering strongly with the Compliance department, HR representatives are conducting and coordinating professional and objective HR investigations, compiling comprehensive reports and ensuring that relevant corrective and preventive actions are taken in the regions or countries. This management approach includes providing specific guidance and trainings to the HR colleagues in the regions and countries on Compliance and employee grievance related topics as well as to the Business on dealing with or avoiding issues.

Which are key HR Investigation principles?
  • Clear allocation of responsibilities
  • Defined subject, matter, scope and mandate
  • Transparent processes and approval hierarchy
  • Objectivity and professionalism in presenting facts
  • Compliance with applicable laws and regulations – mandatory local laws always supersede Group Investigation Principles
  • Confidentiality and strict application of the “need to know” principle
  • Fair and respectful treatment of the persons affected by the investigation (right to be heard, assumption of innocence, prohibited investigation techniques, confidentiality towards superiors and colleagues)
What is Clariant’s policy about suspicious gifts? Should they be reported?

Amanda overhears some statements made by colleague Raymond while talking on the phone. One statement heard was “You scratch my back I scratch yours”. A week later, Raymond is seen flashing around the latest iPhone to his colleagues. Amanda feels suspicious, but is not sure whether to raise a concern since it could be what should she do?

Answer: Since Amanda has overheard this conversation, it would be prudent of her to raise her concerns. While it is great if a reporter can share any evidence of potential wrongdoing by any employee, in the event that there is no evidence but there is a substantial reason to raise a complaint, the same would be required. Therefore, Clariant would expect Amanda to speak up in this case. The Compliance Officer will then decide what manner to collect any evidence in the case.

Luxurious invitation – does Clariant allow to accept such invitations?

Cassie is the new Site Manager at a Clariant factory in country X. She has been invited along with her husband and children for a dinner at a 5star property by ZZZ Facility Management Company. ZZZ claims that they have a recurring account with the property and would just like to use the service to welcome Cassie to her new role. What should Cassie do?

Answer: Cassie has to decline the invitation outright. She has to inform her line manager and Compliance officer of receipt of such a request and the subsequent declining of the invitation. Gifts, entertainment and other grants are part of many cultures and represent – up to a certain value – common business practices and symbols of appreciation. But there are limits as we always preserve our impartiality in business conduct. Gifts and invitations should always be reasonable in value and in relation to the business being conducted. In the current case, it is obvious that ZZZ Facility Management Company is trying to court the favour of the new Site Manager in order to influence her decision for her site.

What is Clariant’s procedure for small, branded gifts?

A supplier who has a long-standing relationship with Clariant sends 3 Clariant Procurement colleagues pens as tokens of appreciation during the festive season. The pens are a local brand with the supplier logo on them. What should the procurement colleagues do in such a case?

Answer: In the current example, considering the value of the pen and the occasion, it would not be a concern to accept the gift received. The colleagues should inform their Compliance Officer as a matter of abundant precaution and use the pens in the office. Denial of such an item could be insulting to the supplier and therefore they may accept the gift but should communicate to the supplier that the gift is received for Clariant and not for our personal benefit.

A suspected bribery – what is Clariant’s procedure?

An operator at the shop floor was present when the Government inspector had come to visit the factory. He noticed the inspector pointing to various areas where material was lying in the open and not packed properly. He saw the Factory Manager put his arm around the Inspector and take him into his office. Sometime later he noticed the Factory Manager and Government Inspector smiling and shaking hands and leaving the premises. The next day at the townhall, the Factory Manager makes the happy announcement that the site has cleared all inspections and given an award which has made the global BU team very happy. What should the operator do?

Answer: Quality and the Ethics & Integrity are of utmost importance at Clariant. In the event such a situation were to come into the public domain, it could cause irrepearable harm to Clariant’s name and reputation. The operator should escalate the matter to the Compliance Officer or he can raise the issue anonymously via the Clariant Integrity Line.

Suspicious offer during negotiations phase – what to do?

Aziz is currently participating in a tender for an important project. During a meeting with the responsible project manager, Chris, from the customer he casually mentions that his significant other is leading a charitable organization committed to saving children from hunger around the world and if Clariant would be interested in supporting this organization with a donation. Chris further states that charitable engagement of suppliers is perceived well by the Customer.

Answer: In the current scenario, Aziz can consider this request a bribe. While dealing with commitments to give anything of value to representatives of our customers or their family members, we should be cautious, especially if it is asked in context of contract negotiations. In case you are not comfortable or if you have concerns, please speak up. It is not always easy to fully recognize bribery and corruption, seek further guidance from Legal or Compliance in case of doubts.

How does Clariant conduct business?

A third party employee, Marty who is deployed at Clariant reports to a Clariant employee, Jacob who is lazy. Marty is tasked with finding vendors to sell company cars and in the bargain strikes a deal with a small vendor to sell all the cars to him at a much lower than market rate, with the condition that the vendor gives him 1 car for a nominal amount. Marty places the quote from this vendor before Jacob who approves without looking into anything. Paolo who sits next to Marty realizes something is wrong in the car sale transactions.

Answer: At Clariant, we conduct our business with honesty and integrity. We do not seek advantages through improper, unfair and illegal means such as bribery. Recognizing and avoiding bribery and corruption are therefore key to protecting our reputation. Marty’s actions are corrupt and are condemnable. Paolo should raise the complaint via the Integrity Line or by reaching out to the Compliance Officer for resolution.

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