Ethics: We Are Committed To Exemplary Behavior

Georges Moreno at the Jubail refinery, Saudi Arabia. Georges MORENO à la raffinerie de Jubail en Arabie Saoudite.
Total operates in a large number of countries with diverse, complex economic and sociocultural environments. This situation can expose us to safety, security, health, environmental and ethical risks. For this reason, states and civil society have particularly high expectations with regard to our industry.
At Total, respecting the environment in which we operate and meeting our stakeholders' expectations are key to responsible, sustainable growth.

Our Priority Business Principles

Our growth and long-term viability is based on the three priority guiding principles outlined below.

In all countries where Total is present, we ensure that our operations comply with the most stringent safety, security, health and environmental standards.

Because we work in an industry that can never be completely risk-free, safety is the cornerstone of our operational efficiency. Safety is also the foundation of our collective commitment to operate sustainably and establish relationships based on trust with our host countries. To meet our goal of zero fatal accidents, we will need to enhance our risk management, both at work stations and at our facilities.

We are also committed to protecting the health of our employees, product users and people living in our host communities.

This commitment goes hand in hand with our approach to protecting the environment, which is based on measuring and managing the impact of our activities.

> Check out our Safety Health Environment Quality Charter

To ensure we exhibit exemplary behavior as a Group in all our host countries, we need to be able to count on the integrity of each of our stakeholders.

This is why we have developed rigorous compliance programs based on zero tolerance towards corruption, fraud and failure to abide by competition law.

In particular, these programs make use of:

  • Dedicated policies and procedures
  • Training and awareness programs on rules and best practices for preventing risks
  • Assistance in preventing and detecting risks
  • Analyses and feedback

> Check out our Business Integrity Guide

We uphold the commitment to our stakeholders to respect human rights everywhere we operate. This includes:

  • Rights at work, through compliance with the International Labour Organization's (ILO) Declaration on Fundamental Principles and Rights at Work.
  • Rights of local communities, through the implementation of grievance mechanisms in communities that are impacted by our activities.
  • Guaranteeing that the measures adopted to ensure the safety and security of our employees and our facilities do not hinder the fundamental freedoms of local community members.

Read our Human Rights Guide

In July 2016, we were the first oil and gas company to issue a Human Rights Briefing paper. Based on the United Nations Guiding Principles Reporting Framework, it shows our current approach to embedding respect for Human Rights in our operations and business relationships.

Check out our Human Rights Briefing Paper

Total's values and priority guiding principles are stated in our Code of Conduct, which serves as our reference document. It is intended for all of our managers and employees, as well as for customers, suppliers, industrial and business partners, host countries, local communities, shareholders and other stakeholders.

Every person at Total, in every unit, is responsible for communicating our values and complying with our guiding principles. Together, we can establish a foundation for sustainable growth, create value for all of our stakeholders and strengthen our commitment to better energy.

Patrick Pouyanné
Chairman and Chief Executive Officer of Total

A major commitment to promote financial transparency

At Total, we are committed to rigorous transparency concerning the disclosure of revenues generated by our activities. We have supported the Extractive Industries Transparency Initiative (EITI) since it started in 2002 with the aim to report the taxes paid by extractive industry companies to host country governments. We are particularly engaged in this voluntary, multilateral initiative, as it offers a framework for dialogue to everyone involved, including governments, oil, gas and mining companies, and civil society.

In addition to our commitment in favor of the EITI, we report the payments made by the Group’s extractive companies for the benefit of each government of states or territories in which Total carries out its activities. In our annual registration document, we break down the types of payment and totals by country, project and government.

Our Ethics Committee: Ensuring Compliance With Our Principles

Since 2001, the Ethics Committee has been responsible for monitoring the application of our Code of Conduct. Importantly, it is also responsible for supporting and advising Total’s employees and stakeholders and for listening to their concerns.
Employees and stakeholders may contact the Committee to:
  • Ask a question or request advice concerning the application of or compliance with the Code of Conduct
  • Report any matter that poses serious risks in areas such as corruption, fraud, anti-competitive practices, discrimination, workplace harassment, workplace health, hygiene and safety, and environmental protection.

Speaking-up: an alert system open to all

Businessmen in conversation

Situations in the field can be complex, which means our employees may need advice. To support them every day, we encourage an environment of dialogue and trust in which each person can express his or her point of view and concerns. Our employees may contact their immediate supervisors, an HR manager, any other manager, their Compliance Officer or their Ethics Officer. Because ethics is everybody's responsibility, our employees and our external stakeholders may contact the Ethics Committee if they need advice, have a question or want to report any matter that poses an ethical risk at

Communicating And Promoting Our Ethics Policy

We ensure that all of our stakeholders understand, receive and apply our ethics policy through assessments and independent ethics audits. These assessments and audits enhance the consistency of our commitment to compliance and corporate social responsibility and help us continuously improve our policies and procedures by identifying best practices.
We work with several external organizations, including:
Lastly, we participate in various international forums with other companies and external stakeholders, with the goal of improving our community engagement performance by sharing best practices and contributing to the international dissemination of ethical principles.