Compliance Officer - The roll and its duty

Compliance Officer - The roll and its duty

JOZO KNEZ, Lider media | September 6, 2020

In order to prevent fraud and give investors full confidence in Croatia as a country open to investment, it is necessary to increase compliance in companies. As stated by the US Deputy Ambassador to the Republic of Croatia Victoria J. Taylor who opened the 'Compliance Officer: Role and Duties' roundtable hosted by ICCrA - Institute for Compliance, Criminal Compliance and Anti-Money Laundering and Lider Business Weekly magazine and with the financial support of the City of Zagreb and the sponsorship of the Croatian Chamber of Commerce held at the Hilton Garden Inn in Zagreb. Participants were also welcomed by Deputy Mayor Olivera Majić, who emphasized the importance of this role in all companies. ICCrA' s President Davor Iljkić stressed, however, that he hopes the Government will acknowledge the Institute as an independent control mechanism for implementing business compliance. - The first steps have been taken, but the ones that follow will be even more important, but also more difficult - Iljkić said, referring to the Government's proposal to introduce the function of monitoring business compliance in majority state-owned entities.

Skills more important than the profession

President of the Association of Certified Fraud Examiners - Chapter Slovenia Sandra Damijan gave a speech on what a 2020 compliance officer will the increasing pressures that pose a challenge for the compliance officer be now and in the future. - Increasingly dynamic regulatory changes, financial crime and fraud and the prevention of money laundering are the biggest challenges that compliance officers will face in the future,- Damian said, adding that the manufacturing and financial sectors are most exposed to fraud and that on average the largest criminal activities occur in publishing, energetics, professional services, construction and mining. The Executive Director of State Agency for Deposit Insurance and Bank Resolution, Marija Hrebac, presented the duties of 'compliance officer'. - 'Compliance' is an evolutionary, developmentally imposed role or function within an organization that must be present if the company wants to operate in the long run. The compliance officer must ensure that the company operates ethically and in accordance with the legal regulations of the market in which it operates - said Hrebac. Such an official, she emphasized, must master business skills, such as analytical, communication and organizational skills. She added that the profession is not so important. Business Compliance Officer at Hrvatski Telekom Vinko Berković outlined the benefits of this function in an organization like HT. - Expanding the business, attracting new customers, strengthening the corporate culture are just some of the benefits - said Berković, adding that compliance management helps the Group comply with legal requirements and internal regulations to prevent liability risks and other legal deficiencies for the company, employees and governing bodies. He also asserted that the breach of compliance not only brings about fines but also a loss of the company's reputation, which was later confirmed by Irena Kajganić, a 'compliance officer' at Siemens. - Heavy fines, exclusion from the public competition, incomprehensible damage to reputation are just some of the problems that have arisen from poor compliance - Kajganić said.

An advisor, not a police officer

The roundtable also hosted a debate attended by King ICT Chairman of the board Plamenko Barišić, OECD chairman Drago Kos, Irena Kajganić and Zdenka Doko, the Head of Internal Auditor General Department at the City of Zagreb. Barišić said that IT companies somehow have a coordinated business management because they cooperate with foreign partners, which is often a prerequisite for cooperation. Drago Kos compared 'officer compliance' with a police officer because everyone in the company nowadays treats him like one, while he should be considered as an advisor and an assistant. Zdenka Doko said Zagreb ensured compliance with the regulations.

„Compliance“ must also begin to transition into the public sector

The public sector recognized compliance as early as 2005 because it was our obligation when joining the European Union. An internal control system was henceforth introduced to ensure compliance with the laws - Doko said, adding that Holding also had a substitute of its kind for compliance. The debate was concluded by Kos, who stated that there is no convention to prescribe compliance in the public sector, and when it comes to corruption, this sector is most often affected.

The panel partners were Autowill, Hilton, Pula Hotel, King ICT, Kraš and HT.

Check out the event photo gallery