Annual Report 2023

49. Reporting Means and Policy on the Reporting of Irregularities in the Company

Since 2004, the Ethics Committee of Jerónimo Martins has implemented a system of bottom-up communication that ensures that every employee and other stakeholders, regardless of their function, to report possible irregularities occurring in the Group. They may also make any comments, particularly with respect to compliance with the Code of Conduct.

The Code of Conduct defines the principles and values of the Jerónimo Martins Group, namely, the respect for the law, honesty and integrity, and corporate social responsibility, and a set of rules of conduct such as non-discrimination and equal opportunities, loyalty in negotiating with suppliers, prevention of conflicts of interests, among other matters.

The Ethics Committee has informed all the Group employees, through internal communication channels, of its email address and the contents of the Code of Conduct, of which is delivered a copy to each employee on the moment of his admission in any of the Group’s Companies. Without prejudice of resorting to the Ethics Committee’s email, the employees can always resort to their hierarchy for guidance about the Code of Conduct, or should they want to report any irregularity. The employees can also use the Employee Assistance Service, which is an internal channel available in each of the countries where the Group operates.

In 2019, the Board of Directors approved an Anti-Corruption Policy, which is applicable to all Jerónimo Martins’ Group Companies and all its associates – including management positions and positions based on a term of office –, and regardless of the nature of their contractual relationship, job position or working country, and which purpose is to establish the acting principles and obligations laid out in the Code of Conduct with regard to honesty and integrity. This Policy sets rules for preventing unlawful conducts that constitute acts of corruption and safeguarding against potential conflicts of interest. On what concerns conflicts of interests, the Anti-Corruption Policy foresees that the associate shall immediately report the existence of such conflict and refrain from carrying out any act or making any decision in relation to it. According to the Policy, any associate who becomes aware or has justified suspicions of breaches to the Policy should report such situations and, in case of doubt about the existence of a conflict of interest, the Ethics Committee should be consulted.

The Company has a Whistleblowing Policy, which establishes the set of rules adopted with a view to receiving, recording, and handling reports on wrongdoing by employees and other stakeholders, concerning any of the companies that are part of the Jerónimo Martins Group, in order to ensure, namely, the existence of mechanisms for detecting and preventing wrongdoing, the promotion of a culture of transparency, integrity and accountability and the consequent adoption of ethical, principled and professional behaviour by the Company’s employees and managers, compliance with EU law, national law and the Jerónimo Martins Group Code of Conduct, and the effective risk management.

This Policy is available on the Company’s institutional website, referred to in point 59.

In light of the existing Whistleblowing Policy, face-to-face and telematic training sessions are carried out, and communication instruments containing various information in this regard are disseminated, highlighting concrete situations that may consubstantiate internal or external risks for the Company. In addition, the Company disclosed on its website, referred to above, and on its intranet a Plan for the Prevention of Corruption Risks, applicable to the Company and its subsidiaries.

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