Reminder - Ethical Behavior of Suppliers and Contractors

United Nations suppliers and contractors must comply with the United Nations Supplier Code of Conduct and General Conditions of Contract, in particular the provisions on sexual exploitation, child labour, discrimination, conditions of work, harassment, and mines.

The United Nations Procurement Division reminds the UN supplier community, that as a UN registered supplier you have accepted the United Nations Supplier Code of Conduct, which reflects the core values outlined in the Charter of the United Nations. The UN expects suppliers to ensure that this Code of Conduct, in particular its provisions on child labour, discrimination, conditions of work, harassment, harsh or inhumane treatment, and mines, is communicated to their employees, parent, subsidiary and affiliated entities as well as any subcontractors, and that it is done in the local language and in a manner that is understood by all.

In addition, UN contractors are reminded of their obligation to comply with the UN General Conditions of Contracts, which contain specific provisions on mines, child labor and sexual exploitation, and form an integral part of every contract between the UN and a supplier.

UN vendors and contractors shall not engage or attempt to engage in proscribed practices (including but not limited to sexual exploitation, corruption, conflict of interest, offers of gifts and hospitality, offers of employment or any other unethical or anti-competitive practice):

Sexual Exploitation and Abuse: Sexual exploitation and abuse violate universally recognized international legal norms and standards and have always been unacceptable behaviour and prohibited conduct for the UN. Prior to entering into agreements with the UN, suppliers are informed of the standards of conduct with respect to the prohibition of sexual exploitation and abuse, expected by the UN. Such standards include, but are not limited to, the prohibition of: (1) engaging in any sexual activity with any person under the age of 18, regardless of any laws of majority or consent, (2) exchanging any money, employment, goods, services, or other things of value, for sex, and/or (3) engaging in any sexual activity that is exploitive or degrading to any person. The UN expects its suppliers to take all appropriate measures to prohibit their employees or other persons engaged by the suppliers, from engaging in sexual exploitation and abuse. The UN also expects its suppliers to create and maintain an environment that prevents sexual exploitation and abuse.

Corruption: The UN expects its suppliers to adhere to the highest standards of moral and ethical conduct, to respect local laws and not engage in any form of corrupt practices, including but not limited to extortion, fraud, or bribery.

Conflict of Interest: UN suppliers are expected to disclose to the UN any situation that may appear as a conflict of interest, and disclose to the UN if any UN official or professional under contract with the UN may have an interest of any kind in the supplier’s business or any kind of economic ties with the supplier.

Gifts and Hospitality: The UN has a “zero tolerance” policy and does not accept any type of gift or any offer of hospitality. The UN will not accept any invitations to sporting or cultural events, offers of holidays or other recreational trips, transportation, or invitations to lunches or dinners. The UN expects its suppliers not to offer any benefit such as free goods or services, employment or sales opportunity to a UN staff member in order to facilitate the suppliers’ business with the UN.

Post-employment Restrictions: Post-employment restrictions may apply to UN staff in service and former UN staff members who participated in the procurement process, if such persons had prior professional dealings with suppliers. UN suppliers are expected to refrain from offering employment to any such person for a period of one year following separation from service.

Please note that as a UN supplier and/or contractor, failure to comply with the undertakings contained in the UN Supplier Code of Conduct and the UN General Conditions of Contract may preclude suppliers from being eligible for a contract award or constitute grounds for termination of any agreement with the United Nations, among other sanctions.