In June 2020, The Ethics Institute launched a five year project entitled “Collective action to advance business integrity in Mozambique”. Funded by the Siemens Integrity Initiative, the main aim of the project is to strengthen economic growth and business collaboration in Mozambique by building ethics management capacity in the private sector.
Research clearly shows how corruption can have a calamitous effect on the economic growth of a country and the prosperity of its people. The project aims to establish a sound rationale for companies to integrate ethical practice within their operations so that it becomes commonly understood business procedure.
Why should we have a serious sense of urgency about doing business with integrity?
Transparency International’s 2019 Corruption Perception Index ranked Mozambique 146th of 183 countries, alongside Iran and Nigeria. In a developing country such as Mozambique, businesses deal with significant risks as a result of corruption. Multinational companies and international agencies are required to comply with international standards and legal regulations. Additionally, Global legislation continues to evolve at pace and international bodies such as the United Nations and the Organisation for Economic Co-operation and Development (OECD) are increasingly vocal on the detrimental effects of corruption on every aspect of development. The imperative is stronger than ever for businesses to operate within a sound, transparent and unambiguous ethical framework.
The following local drivers underpin the project:
- High levels of corruption
- Lack of transparency, accountability and participation.
- Political and economic drivers resulting in lack of integrity management.
- A growing trust deficit between society, business and government.
- Widening inequality and injustice.
This project does not take place in isolation and as such forms part of an open system where the governance and performance of the project beneficiary organisations are influenced by political, legal, economic, social, environmental and technological factors, as well as changes in Mozambique, the region, Africa and internationally.
The open system model below illustrates this principle: