Freight forwarding and logistic companies – members of the Bulgarian Association for Freight Forwarding, Transport and Logistics (NSBS) are obliged to observe the provisions of this Code of Professional Conduct and to strive for the achievement of the following objectives when carrying out their activities:
To promote, support and keep the reputation of NSBS and the forwarding industry;
To strengthen and improve public trust in the freight forwarding profession;
To ensure high quality service levels and performance of their undertaken and/or statutory obligations;
To settle any claims and complaints promptly and fairly in compliance with applicable regulations;
To establish and maintain professional, honest and decent relations with clients, partners and suppliers;
To respect the principles of free and fair competition;
To contribute to the sustainable development of the transport industry by reducing its adverse impact on the environment, by reducing the energy intensiveness of the industry and by improving the accessibility to transport and freight logistic services.
The achievement of the above objectives is considered a criterion for the good reputation and reliability of all NSBS members within the economic life of the country.
In their business, NSBS members are led by the following major principles and values:
І. Correct business relations with clients and partners:
To work professionally, competently and responsibly in their clients’ interests;
Upon entering into, and performing freight forwarding and logistic service contracts, to apply the conditions as provided for in the NSBS Standard Trading Conditions defining the freight forwarder’s responsibility to the client;
To perform correctly and diligently all their obligations arising out of contracts concluded, respecting the consumer rights;
To settle fairly and promptly any complaints and claims for loss and/or damages occurred due to the performance of the freight forwarding contract.
ІІ. Rules of free and fair competition:
To work in the conditions of open market and fair competition amongst them, always to respect the “fair play” principles, to ensure equal treatment of all participants in the economic life and to respect their interests;
To respect the legal standards, approved business practices and public norms of conduct attributable to business entities;
Not to accept and allow corruption acts and practices aimed at obtaining competitive advantages for themselves or for their clients.
ІІІ. Information confidentiality:
To keep any business and accounting information of their clients, partners and competitors confidential.
To restrain from disseminating false, partial or wrong information, including about their competitors, clients and employees.
ІV. Observance of national and international legislation and NSBS internal rules:
To observe all applicable international conventions, EU regulations and bilateral treaties;
To observe the applicable legislation, rules, regulations, and business practices of the countries they operate;
To observe the Statutes, Standard Trading Conditions (STC), Standard Warehousing Conditions (SWC) and NSBS resolutions.
V. Observance of anti-trust and anti-cartel rules of NSBS (Doc. УС07/21122011):
To restrain from participating in restrictive/ oppressive business practices or illegal cartel agreements;
Freight forwarders’ business affairs should exclude joint actions that might be considered cartel agreements, for example:
Price arrangements: any kind of arrangement whatsoever, whether written or oral, explicit or implicit, aimed at, or resulting in, establishing and maintaining prices or price related conditions, such as crediting, discounts, profit limit arrangement, defining additional consideration, commission, charge levels;
Market or client allocation:any conventions – explicit or implicit – aimed at, or resulting in, allocation of markets, for example agreements for non provision and implementation of services within specific geographic areas and/or sector branches, to specific clients or groups of clients, such as consideration against reciprocal obligation by a competitor.
“Conspiracy” against clients: explicit or implicit agreements aimed at, or resulting in, compelling the client to buy non-demanded good or service with view of receiving the demanded good or service;
“Group boycott”: conventions aimed at, or resulting in, refusing transactions with competitors, clients, suppliers and other third parties.
Compliance and enforcement:
1.) All members are obliged to observe and implement the principles of NSBS’ Code of Professional Conduct.
2.) In case of serious and regular violation of the Code of Professional Conduct, the NSBS’ Ethics Commission shall take immediate measures.
3.) The violators shall be sanctioned pursuant to article 22, paragraph 2, item 3 and item 4 of the NSBS’ Statutes.
The Code of Professional Conduct is an integral part of NSBS’ Statutes and is approved by the NSBS General Meeting on 21.06.2012.