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24

Jul
2023

Legal news

General articles

International and European law

Public law

24/ Jul
2023

Legal news — General articles

International and European law — Public law

Principles and rules governing the ethics, professional conduct and compliance of members of the Government (Sovereign Order 9.931 of 15 June 2023)

Sovereign Order no. 9.931 of 15 June 2023 (JDM no. 8652 of 21 July 2023) sets out the principles and rules of ethics, professional conduct and compliance applicable to members of the Government.

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SUMMARY

Sovereign Order no. 9.931 is to be linked to the Fifth Evaluation Round of the Council of Europe's Group of States against Corruption (GRECO), launched on 20 March 2017 and forthcoming for Monaco, which focuses on "Preventing corruption and promoting integrity in central governments (top executive functions) and law enforcement agencies":

  • ethical principles and rules of conduct
  • conflict of interest
  • prohibition or restriction of certain activities
  • declaration of assets, income, liabilities and interests
  • enforcement of the rules regarding conflicts of interest
  • awareness.

Sovereign Order n° 9.931 transcribes this provision with regard to the members of the Government, namely the Ministre d’État (Minister of State) and the Conseillers de Gouvernement-Ministres (Government Councillors-Ministers).

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IN DETAIL

Ethical principles and rules of professional conduct

— In carrying out their duties, members of the Government are subject to the principles of loyalty, dignity, probity, disinterestedness, impartiality, objectivity and professional discretion.

— Establishment of a Comité d’éthique (Ethics Committee) (composed of three persons from outside the Administration chosen for their competence in the field of deontology, ethics and compliance) for advice and all questions concerning the individual situation of a member of the Government.

— Creation of a Référent déontologue (Compliance Referent) (a person from outside the Administration chosen for his or her competence in the field of ethics, professional conduct and compliance) responsible for providing advice on the application of the principles and rules of ethics, professional conduct and compliance to their function.

Conflicts of interest

— It is the responsibility of each member of the Government to:

  • prevent any potential or apparent conflict of interest (any situation of interference between a public interest and a private interest that influences or appears to influence the independent, impartial and objective performance of their duties) in which they may find themselves
  • or to put an end to any real conflict of interest in which they find themselves.

— Organisation of withdrawal and abstention procedures in situations of real, potential or apparent conflict of interest.

Declaration of assets and interests (confidential)

— The declaration of assets submitted to the Chairman of the Commission Supérieure des Comptes includes the following information:

  1. built and unbuilt property ;
  2. securities
  3. life insurance policies
  4. current or savings bank accounts, passbooks and other savings products;
  5. miscellaneous movable property worth more than €15,000;
  6. motorised land vehicles, boats, ships and aircraft;
  7. businesses or clienteles and offices;
  8. movable and immovable property and accounts held abroad;
  9. liabilities in excess of €100,000.

— The declaration of interests submitted to the Minister of State shall cover the following:

  1. professional activities giving rise to remuneration or bonus carried out on the date of appointment ;
  2. professional activities giving rise to remuneration or bonus carried out during the last five years;
  3. consultancy activities carried out on the date of appointment and during the last five years;
  4. holdings in the governing bodies of a private body or company on the date of appointment and during the last five years;
  5. direct financial holdings in the capital of a company on the date of appointment;
  6. professional activities carried out on the date of appointment by the spouse, the partner bound by a civil solidarity contract or by another contract relating to the organisation of joint life or cohabitation validly concluded abroad in application of foreign law;
  7. voluntary work that gives rise or is likely to give rise to a conflict of interest;
  8. voluntary work carried out on the date of appointment by the spouse, the partner bound by a civil solidarity contract or by another contract relating to the organisation of joint life or cohabitation validly concluded abroad in application of foreign law;
  9. elected offices and directorships in private entities held on the date of appointment and during the five years preceding the appointment.

Gifts and benefits (in connection with the performance of duties)

— - Members of the Government must neither solicit nor accept gifts, favours, invitations or any other advantage (goods of any kind, whether movable, whether tangible or intangible, or immovable, or services of any kind whatsoever) intended for themselves, their family, their relatives or organisations with which they have or have had business or political relations:

  • which could influence or appear to influence the impartiality, independence or objectivity with which they must carry out their duties,
  • or which might constitute or appear to constitute a reward in connection with their duties,
  • or which could influence or appear to influence their judgement in a decision-making process.

The following may be accepted, but may not be solicited:

  1. gifts received by virtue of diplomatic custom and the rules of courtesy in use, the estimated value of which does not exceed the sum of 200 € ;
  2. invitations to an event, demonstration or ceremony, particularly sporting or cultural, which the members attend or participate in as a representative of the Prince's Government.

— The receipt of any gift or benefit is recorded in a livre d’inventaire (inventory book) listed and kept as appropriate by the Secretariat General of the Government or the Secretariat General of the Ministerial Department, and reviewed annually by the Inspectorate General of the Administration.

Exercise of private activities by former members of the Government

—The Ethics Committee's opinion is sought when any member of the Government, on leaving government office and within two years of doing so, intends to engage in a gainful activity, whether salaried or not, in a private company or organisation or in a liberal profession.

— Should the former member of the Government concerned fail to comply with the opinion of the Ethics Committee, it will be published in the Journal de Monaco.

Training and awareness

When they take up their duties, all members of the Government are informed of the principles and rules of ethics, professional conduct and compliance applicable to their position with regard to the prevention of conflicts of interest and the promotion of integrity. They are also given a guide to good practice.

During their term of office, members of the Government receive training and awareness-raising on ethical issues.

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