Compliance

OUR APPROACH OUR TAX STRATEGY MODERN SLAVERY FOOTPRINT

As an international company with a long and successful history, Merz Aesthetics has an excellent reputation. We are fully aware of our responsibilities to our employees, customers and partners, as well as to the natural environment and the communities in which we do business.

Corporate compliance is the cornerstone of all these responsibilities. Compliance at Merz Aesthetics means more than adhering to both external and internal rules; it means respecting and living the values that guide our business and define our way of working.

Merz Aesthetics is committed to setting the highest ethical standards, and all our employees are expected to do the same by following the Merz Aesthetics Global Code of Conduct and by exhibiting fairness, trust, open communication and transparency in all their interactions with customers, partners and colleagues.

OUR APPROACH

Like all healthcare organisations, Merz Aesthetics is subject to a host of compliance guidelines, laws and codes of practice.

Our overall approach to compliance is simple – we will observe the laws and codes that apply to us and, where there is a lack of clarity in a specific situation, we apply a simple mantra:

Our commercial activities must:

  • Never compromise patient safety
  • Never mislead healthcare professionals

To ensure proper compliance across our company, we have a guidance pack and appropriate training to support all employees.

OUR TAX STRATEGY

MERZ PHARMA UK LTD TAX STRATEGY 2022

Merz manages taxes in a way which is transparent, aligned with the business strategy and justifiable to the tax authorities.

MANAGEMENT AND GOVERNANCE

Through the Tax and Audit Committee of the Supervisory Board, the Board has a line of sight on tax compliance risk and tax planning.

Tax is generally managed on the level of each entity. Guidelines are issued by the headquartered group tax department regarding tax matters with cross-border relevance. Both the local tax function and the group tax department are fully integrated into the business operations. The local tax function reports to the Board of the company. Extra support in compliance and technical issues is provided by external advisors as well as by the group tax department as and when required.

ATTITUDE TO TAX PLANNING

Tax planning is limited to structuring the Group’s affairs in a manner that is wholly consistent with both the letter and spirit of the law, the resultant outcome being one that reflects the commercial and economic reality of the Group’s activities.

LEVEL OF RISK

As part of any business decisions, taxation outcomes are considered as one of many relevant factors. Subsequent to the business decision, the most efficient tax treatment will be applied that is consistent with both the letter and spirit of the law.

If a business transaction presents any tax uncertainty, Merz applies a cautious and prudent approach with regard to the level of tax risk.

INTERACTION WITH HMRC

Merz is open with HMRC and raises significant compliance issues, uncertainties and/or irregularities with HMRC.

MODERN SLAVERY FOOTPRINT

Merz GmbH & Co. KGaA and its UK subsidiary (Merz Pharma UK Ltd) is an equal rights employer and has an explicit globally adopted Code of Conduct which contains, amongst other things, our approach to employees’ human rights, thereby addressing our approach to seeking to ensure that modern slavery and human trafficking forms no part of our business. The Code specifically cites:

Merz recognises its role in using influence to promote and protect human rights and to ensure that our business operations do not contribute directly or indirectly to human rights abuses. Accordingly, whether or not a third party demonstrates respect for the Merz Code of Conduct will have a direct influence on whether Merz continues their commercial relationship. To support this decision making Merz is actively rolling out a comprehensive third party compliance program based on the Code of Conduct.

In brief, we adhere to the following expectations based on internationally accepted ethical standards:

  • Wages are fair and competitive and based on performance and ethical conduct.
  • Employees are free from unfair or unethical working conditions, including all forms of forced and compulsory labour, or child labour.
  • Labour standards comply with the laws of the jurisdictions in which we operate.
  • All of our operations provide a safe and healthy work environment. Workers are not expected to endure unsafe working conditions.
  • We respect our employees’ right to join or not to join trade unions, and generally to join together for the purpose of promoting common goals.
  • We do not discriminate in employment, contracting, wages, promotion, working conditions or in any other opportunity based on ethnic origin, race, age, gender, sexual orientation, religious beliefs or conviction, disability, or any other legally protected characteristic, subject to compliance with applicable law.

Merz is a family-owned company and places people at the heart of its business operations. Slavery and trafficking have no place in how we operate and grow.

     

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