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Compliance

Our “Forward Thinking Healthcare” model is the maxim for corporate governance at Fresenius, determines our corporate culture, and is an integral part of our day-to-day work. It is the basis for our corporate values reflected in the Fresenius Code of Conduct. In this Code of Conduct, the Management Board commits itself without limitation to binding principles and rules for conduct within the Company and in its course of the business. These include professionalism, honesty, and integrity in relations with our patients, customers, suppliers, employees, and shareholders. Furthermore, in its Code of Conduct, Fresenius commits itself to fair competition and to dealing honestly with business partners and officials. Fresenius expects all of its employees to comply with all applicable principles, laws, and regulations. Breaches will not be tolerated and will be pursued.

Company guidelines and rules of procedure provide specific details regarding the regulations included in the Fresenius Code of Conduct. Their purpose is to help our employees make the right decisions in their day-to-day work. The Fresenius Code of Conduct is complemented by the codes of conduct and compliance programs of the Company’s business segments. The latter comply with the requirements that arise from their specific activities and are generally not interfered with as long as they are not in conflict with the Fresenius Code of Conduct. The Fresenius Code of Conduct accordingly applies to all employees of the Fresenius Group.

Employees are obliged to report any non-compliance with the Code, or if they become aware of a potential non-compliance, to their superiors or a compliance manager. The Code of Conduct explicitly rules that no employee may incur any disadvantage as a result of reporting a potential breach of the Code. That is why breaches of the Code of Conduct may also be reported anonymously to an e-mail address set up for this purpose. In various business segments breaches may also be reported via a whistleblower hotline.

Regular training, for example on the Code of Conduct in general or on specific topics, such as anticorruption and cartel law, helps our employees to comply with the Fresenius Code of Conduct, the Company guidelines, and our rules of procedure. Fresenius gives top priority to this training, which is obligatory for all employees, including management. The aim is to make participants aware of potential breaches of compliance and for them to learn to recognize and avoid risks and conflicts of interest at an early stage. Since 2012, besides participating in person, it has been possible to do the training online. In addition, a quarterly Compliance Newsletter provides information on the latest developments in this field.

The Internal Audit division audits business segments and Group companies also in regard to compliance-relevant issues. It discusses potential areas of risk prior to, and takes account of them in, its audit. If the results of an audit reveal any potential for improvement, this will be implemented jointly with the Corporate Compliance department at Fresenius SE & Co. KGaA.

Monitoring compliance is a central duty of management at all levels. The Corporate Compliance department reports to the Chief Compliance Officer − the member of the Management Board responsible for Legal Affairs, Compliance, and Human Resources. It supports him in developing and implementing guidelines and procedures aimed at ensuring compliance with statutory regulations and the requirements of the Fresenius Compliance Program.

Each business segment has initiated compliance activities and guidelines, and appointed a Chief Compliance Officer. This officer is in charge of introducing, developing, and monitoring compliance. Depending on the organizational and business structures, the Chief Compliance Officer is assisted by additional compliance officers. The employees at the Corporate Compliance department similarly support and advise the compliance officers of the business segments, as well as at the regional and local levels.

The Compliance Steering Committee is the central committee for discussing compliance issues. It comprises the Chief Compliance Officer, the Chief Financial Officer, and the heads of Legal Affairs, Internal Audit, and the Corporate Compliance department. It deals with the status of major projects and discusses procedures concerning recognized risks and the steps to be taken to identify breaches of compliance. It also specifies procedures for dealing with any breach.

The supervisory bodies at Fresenius SE & Co. KGaA as well as the general partner, Fresenius Management SE, are regularly informed – no less than once a year – about compliance within the Group.

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