Initiatives of Internal Control
International Trade Initiatives
Epson is a multinational corporation with production centers, sales centers, customers, and business partners around the world. Smooth international trade operations are essential for delivering Epson products and services to customers in a timely manner.
Meanwhile, we must observe numerous conventions and frameworks governing international trade that have been put in place to maintain international peace and security.
To maintain compliance with these and to ensure smooth trade, Epson has established comprehensive systems and processes that have enabled Group companies to earn certification from the relevant authorities for compliance with international trade programs. (See the table below.)
|Seiko Epson Corporation||Special general bulk export license
(Ministry of Economy, Trade and Industry)
|The program grants a blanket license to export certain items (or provide certain information) to certain destinations without an individual application if an export control system is found to be in place.|
|Seiko Epson Corporation||Authorized exporter
(Ministry of Finance, Tokyo Customs)
|The program enables certified parties to get export permission even if goods are not brought into a bonded facility, etc., if an export security control and compliance system is found to be in place.|
|Seiko Epson Corporation||Authorized importer
(Ministry of Finance, Tokyo Customs)
|The program enables certified parties to separate import declarations from tax declarations and accept goods before filing a tax declaration if an import security control and compliance system is found to be in place.|
|Epson America Inc.||Customs-Trade Partnership Against Terrorism (C-TPAT)
|The program is designed to strengthen security of goods imported to the US and security of import channels to the US.|
|Epson Portland Inc.|
|Epson El Paso Inc.|
Epson has a comprehensive program for instilling compliance awareness.
In addition to a training course that presents employees with a broad overview of essential legal issues, we also provide compliance training that focuses on certain targeted subjects, such as copyright laws and antitrust laws. Compliance issues are also built into the training curriculums for new employees, persons recently promoted to senior staff positions, and managers.
For the executive management team we brought in an outside expert to give a seminar on antitrust issues. Overseas affiliates have their own local compliance rules and compliance training programs.
Topic: Mandatory Training at Epson (China) Co., Ltd.
Epson (China) Co., Ltd. (ECC), which serves both as the regional head office in China and as a sales company, has been conducting a different kind of compliance training since March 2015. ECC adopted a new policy of requiring all personnel, from the president on down, to take a compliance training course that aims to immediately supply them not just with knowledge, but with wisdom. The course is designed to be easy to understand (avoiding legal language wherever possible and using visual aids), kind (presenting solutions instead of only what is prohibited), and interesting. ECC created a booklet with illustrations to explain potential compliance risks in the company, and the number of people at each training session was limited to encourage active participation in debate. Approximately 800 ECC employees and managers participated in the 50 sessions held during the 2015 fiscal year.
Beginning in the 2016 fiscal year, the training curriculum will be modified and rolled out to Epson Group manufacturing companies in China.
October is Compliance Month at Epson. We use this month as an opportunity to remind ourselves of the importance of compliance in achieving the goals of the Management Philosophy and to communicate the Epson's compliance policies. In the 2015 fiscal year we expanded Compliance Month activities globally with the objective of raising compliance awareness in the workplace in line with the Management Philosophy.
Activities to raise awareness included (1) messages issued by the Chief Compliance Officer and the heads of each business unit and Group company; (2) a re-examination of internal controls by the head of each company; and (3) the posting of feature stories on compliance in company newsletters. In addition, many workplaces in Japan raised compliance awareness by discussing compliance issues that relate to them.
After Compliance Month activities are completed, we look to improve the activities for the following year by conducting a survey to find out what kind of actions were taken by each organization, the subject of discussions, and any compliance concerns people may have in Epson. We also ask for opinions and suggestions about activities. Survey responses are totaled and analyzed, and the results are made available to employees.
Business Continuity Management
Epson has a solid business continuity management program in place. For many years we have taken action to prevent and manage disasters, but the program really got started in 2006, when we formulated a business continuity plan (BCP) for what was then our liquid crystal displays business.
If a disaster or some other event impacts business at an Epson Group production site, our first priority is to ensure the safety of our employees. Next, we take steps to ensure continuity of the product supply so as not to inconvenience our customers. In order to provide a steady supply of products, particularly consumables and core components such as quartz and semiconductor devices, print heads, and small liquid crystal panels, we have preparations in place that allow us to limit damage, secure repair parts, switch to alternative producers, and restore operations in line with established procedures. We conduct exercises to check our procedures and ensure their effectiveness. Mission-critical IT systems and critical data that are essential for business continuity are consolidated in a robust data center, and backups are at the ready in the event of a disaster. We have secured multiple distribution routes to enable us to immediately switch to alternative routes in response to any disruption in international shipping and transport. In addition, our finance, accounting, public relations, and other key corporate functions have established BCPs so that business can continue in emergencies.
Meanwhile, we ask the companies that make up our supply chain to strengthen their BCPs, and we check to see how established those BCPs are. We analyze the items we purchase, and we develop multiple sources for those that are most important. When we cannot secure multiple sources, we keep an inventory of goods on hand or try other means to ensure continuous production in the event that something should happen to a supplier.
Every business and site in the Epson Group will continue to refine its BCP to ensure that it has the resilience to withstand threats to business continuity going forward.