In its Bayer Group Regulation “Code of Conduct for Responsible Lobbying,” Bayer sets out clear and binding rules for its involvement in political matters, aiming to ensure transparency in any collaboration with the representatives of political institutions.
The Group’s Public and Governmental Affairs Committee is responsible for the strategic planning of Bayer’s political work. This especially includes developing the company’s political standpoints, as well as determining the position of the Bayer Board of Management on important political issues. In 2015 Bayer’s political lobbying again focused on the acceptance of products and technologies in society, on submitting proposals for creating sustainable health care systems, on chemicals and energy policy, and on climate protection. Bayer also actively promotes the protection of intellectual property in order to be able to continue developing innovative products. In addition, Bayer makes suggestions relating to the regulatory framework for crop protection products and seeds.
Our liaison offices in Berlin, Brussels, Washington, Moscow, Brasilia and Beijing are key points of contact between the Group and the political arena. Bayer actively participates in existing transparency initiatives. It publishes details of costs, employee numbers and any of the other statistics required in each country, e.g. in the transparency registers of European institutions or the U.S. Congress. Bayer goes way beyond the statutory requirements in doing so. For instance, the Group also publishes data for countries, e.g. in Germany, where there is no legislative requirement to publish such information. In 2015 the costs incurred at the liaison offices for human resources, material and projects totaled approximately: €1.2 million in Berlin, €2 million in Brussels, €6.9 million in Washington, €0.14 million in Moscow, €1.2 million in Brasilia and €1 million in Beijing.
In keeping with our Group Regulation, we have committed not to make any direct donations to political parties, politicians or candidates for political office. However, some associations to which we belong make donations on their own initiative, in compliance with statutory regulations.
In the United States, a number of employees use the Bayer Corporation Political Action Committee (BayPac) to make private donations supporting candidates for congressional office. Political action committees in the United States are government-regulated, legally independent employee groups. In the United States, companies are legally prohibited from donating to political candidates directly. Consequently, such donations are not donations made by the company. The BayPac contributions are regularly reported to the U.S. Federal Election Commission and can be viewed on its website.