THIS CODE APPLIES TO EVERY DIRECTOR, OFFICER (INCLUDING OUR CHIEF EXECUTIVE OFFICER (“CEO”), CHIEF FINANCIAL OFFICER (“CFO”), PRINCIPAL ACCOUNTING OFFICER (“PAO”), AND EMPLOYEE OF AMERICAN CUMO MINING CORPORATION (THE “COMPANY”). THE TERM EMPLOYEE INCLUDES ANY INDIVIDUAL THAT IS PAID ON THE COMPANY PAYROLL.
To further the Company’s fundamental principles of honesty, loyalty, fairness and forthrightness, we have established this Code of Business Conduct and Ethics (this “Code”). Our Code strives to deter wrongdoing and promote the following five objectives:
Below, we discuss situations that require application of our fundamental principles and promotion of our objectives. If there is a conflict between this Code and a specific procedure you should consult the CEO, CFO or another officer as may be designated by the CEO from time to time (the CEO, CFO or any such designated officer, the “Designated Officer”) for guidance. The CEO, in the event of a conflict between this Code and any such procedure, or for any other guidance in respect of this Code absent a specific referral herein, should consult the Chairman of the Corporate Governance Committee of the Board of Directors.
ACCOUNTABILITY FOR COMPLIANCE WITH THE CODE
Each of the Company’s directors, officers and employees is expected to:
Understand. The Company expects YOU to understand the requirements of your position including company expectations and governmental rules and regulations that apply to your position.
Comply. The Company expects YOU to comply with this Code and all applicable laws, rules and regulations.
Report. The Company expects YOU to report any violation of this Code of which you become aware.
Be Accountable. The Company holds YOU accountable for complying with this Code.
The Company and each of its subsidiaries will make and keep books, records and accounts, which in reasonable detail accurately and fairly present the transactions and disposition of the assets of the Company. All directors, officers, employees and other persons are prohibited from directly or indirectly falsifying or causing to be false or misleading any financial or accounting book, record or account. You and others are expressly prohibited from directly or indirectly manipulating an audit, and from destroying or tampering with any record, document or tangible object with the intent to obstruct a pending or contemplated audit, review or federal investigation. The commission of, or participation in, one of these prohibited activities or other illegal conduct will subject you to government penalties, as well as punishment of up to and including termination of employment. No director, officer or employee of the Company may intentionally;
in connection with the audit of financial statements by independent accountants, the preparation of any required reports whether by independent or internal accountants, or any other work which involves or relates to the filing of a document with the U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission (“SEC”) or applicable Canadian securities regulatory authorities.
AMENDMENTS AND MODIFICATIONS OF THIS CODE
There shall be no amendment or modification to this Code except by a vote of the Board of Directors.
In case of any amendment or modification of this Code that applies to an officer or director of the Company, the amendment or modification shall be disclosed as required by applicable law or American Stock Exchange or Toronto Stock Exchange rules.
If you wish to report a suspected violation of this Code anonymously, you may call the Chairman of the Audit Committee of the Board of Directors. You do not have to reveal your identity in order to make a report. If you do reveal your identity, it will not be disclosed by the Chairman of the Audit Committee unless disclosure is unavoidable during an investigation.
ANTI-BOYCOTT AND SANCTIONS LAWS
The Company must comply with applicable anti-boycott laws, which prohibit it from participating in, and require us to report to the authorities any request to participate in, a boycott of a country or businesses within a country. If you receive such a request, report it to the Designated Officer. We will also not engage in business with any government, entity, organization or individual where doing so is prohibited by applicable laws. For more information on these laws contact the Designated Officer, who will consult with or refer you to the appropriate Company legal representatives.
ANTITRUST AND FAIR COMPETITION LAWS
The purpose of antitrust laws in Canada, the United States and most other countries is to provide a level playing field to economic competitors and to promote fair competition. No director, officer or employee, under any circumstances or in any context, may enter into any understanding or agreement, whether express or implied, formal or informal, written or oral, with an actual or potential competitor, which would illegally limit or restrict in any way either party’s actions, including the offers of either party to any third party. This prohibition includes any action relating to prices, costs, profits, products, services, terms or conditions of sale, market share or customer or supplier classification or selection.
It is our policy to comply with all Canadian, U. S. and all other applicable antitrust laws. This policy is not to be compromised or qualified by anyone acting for or on behalf of our Company. You must understand and comply with the antitrust laws as they may bear upon your activities and decisions. Anti-competitive behavior in violation of antitrust laws can result in criminal penalties, both for you and for the Company. Accordingly, any question regarding compliance with antitrust laws or your responsibilities under this policy should be directed to the Designated Officer. Any director, officer or employee found to have knowingly participated in violating the antitrust laws will be subject to disciplinary action, up to and including termination of employment.
You are strictly forbidden from offering, promising or giving money, gifts, loans, rewards, favors or anything of value to any governmental official, employee, agent or other intermediary which is prohibited by law. Those paying a bribe may subject the Company and themselves to civil and criminal penalties. When dealing with government customers or officials, no improper payments will be tolerated. If you receive any offer of money or gifts that is intended to influence a business decision, it should be reported to your supervisor or the Designated Officer immediately.
The Company prohibits improper payments in all of its activities, whether these activities are with governments or in the private sector.
COMPLIANCE WITH LAWS, RULES AND REGULATIONS
The Company’s goal and intention is to comply with the laws, rules and regulations by which we are governed. In fact, we strive to comply not only with requirements of the law but also with recognized compliance practices. All illegal activities or illegal conduct are prohibited whether or not they are specifically set forth in this Code.
Where law does not govern a situation or where the law is unclear or conflicting, you should discuss the situation with your supervisor and management should seek advice from the Designated Officer, who will consult with or refer you or the manager to the appropriate Company legal representatives. Business should always be conducted in a fair and forthright manner. Directors, officers and employees are expected to act according to high ethical standards.
COMPUTER AND INFORMATION SYSTEMS
For business purposes, officers and employees are provided telephones and computer workstations and software, including network access to computing systems such as the Internet and e-mail, to improve personal productivity and to efficiently manage proprietary information in a secure and reliable manner. You must obtain the permission from the CFO to install any software on any Company computer or connect any personal laptop to the Company network. As with other equipment and assets of the Company, we are each responsible for the appropriate use of these assets. Except for limited personal use of the Company’s telephones and computer/e-mail, such equipment may be used only for business purposes. Officers and employees should not expect a right to privacy of their e-mail or Internet use. All e-mails or Internet use on Company equipment may be subject to monitoring by the Company.
CONFIDENTIAL INFORMATION BELONGING TO OTHERS
You must respect the confidentiality of information, including, but not limited to, trade secrets and other information given in confidence by others, including but not limited to partners, suppliers, contractors, competitors or customers, just as we protect our own confidential information. However, certain restrictions about the information of others may place an unfair burden on the Company’s future business. For that reason, directors, officers and employees should coordinate with the Designated Officer to ensure appropriate agreements are in place prior to receiving any confidential third-party information. These agreements must reflect a balance between the value of the information received on the one hand and the logistical and financial costs of maintaining confidentiality of the information and limiting the Company’s business opportunities on the other. In addition, any confidential information that you may possess from an outside source, such as a previous employer, must not, so long as such information remains confidential, be disclosed to or used by the Company. Unsolicited confidential information submitted to the Company should be refused, returned to the sender where possible and deleted, if received via the Internet.
CONFIDENTIAL AND PROPRIETARY INFORMATION
It is the Company’s policy to ensure that all operations, activities and business affairs of the Company and our business associates are kept confidential to the greatest extent possible. Confidential information includes all non-public information that might be of use to competitors, or that might be harmful to the Company or its customers if disclosed. Confidential and proprietary information about the Company or its business associates belongs to the Company, must be treated with strictest confidence and is not to be disclosed or discussed with others.
Unless otherwise agreed to in writing, confidential and proprietary information includes any and all methods, inventions, improvements or discoveries, whether or not patentable or copyrightable, and any other information of a similar nature disclosed to the directors, officers or employees of the Company or otherwise made known to the Company as a consequence of or through employment or association with the Company (including information originated by the director, officer or employee). This can include, but is not limited to, information regarding the Company’s business, products, processes, and services. It also can include information relating to exploration data and information, research, development, inventions, trade secrets, intellectual property of any type or description, data, business plans, marketing strategies, working papers and draft reports and studies, engineering and metallurgy, contract negotiations and business methods or practices.
The following are examples of information that is not considered confidential:
We have exclusive property rights to all confidential and proprietary information regarding the Company or our business associates. The unauthorized disclosure of this information could destroy its value to the Company and give others an unfair advantage. You are responsible for safeguarding Company information and complying with established security controls and procedures. All documents, records, notebooks, notes, memoranda and similar repositories of information containing information of a secret, proprietary, confidential or generally undisclosed nature relating to the Company or our operations and activities made or compiled by the director, officer or employee or made available to you prior to or during the term of your association with the Company, including any copies thereof, unless otherwise agreed to in writing, belong to the Company and shall be held by you in trust solely for the benefit of the Company, and shall be delivered to the Company by you on the termination of your association with us or at any other time we request.
Further information about the Company’s confidentiality policies and procedures is contained in the Company’s Disclosure and Confidentiality Policy. A copy of this Policy, as amended from time to time, is provided to each employee of the Company.
CONFLICTS OF INTEREST
Conflicts of interest can arise in virtually every area of our operations. A “conflict of interest” exists whenever an individual’s private interests interfere or conflict in any way (or even appear to interfere or conflict) with the interests of the Company. We must strive to avoid conflicts of interest. We must each make decisions solely in the best interest of the Company. Any business, financial or other relationship with suppliers, customers or competitors that impairs the exercise of our judgment solely for the benefit of the Company is prohibited.
Directors, officers and employees are expected to deal with advisors or suppliers who best serve the needs of the Company as to price, quality and service in making decisions concerning the use or purchase of materials, equipment, property or services. Directors, officers and employees who use the company’s advisors, suppliers or contractors in a personal capacity are expected to pay market value for materials and services provided.
Officers and employees may not participate in outside employment, self-employment, or serve as officers, directors, partners or consultants for outside organizations, if such activity:
You must inform your supervisor of any outside employment, including the employer’s name and expected work hours.
Reporting Conflicts of Interest or Potential Conflicts of Interest.
You should report any actual or potential conflict of interest involving yourself or others of which you become aware to your supervisor or the Designated Officer. Officers should report any actual or potential conflict of interest involving yourself or others of which you become aware to the Designated Officer or to the Chairman of the Corporate Governance Committee of the Board of Directors. Directors should report any actual or potential conflict of interest involving yourself or others of which you become aware to the Chairman of the Corporate Governance Committee of the Board of Directors.
CORPORATE OPPORTUNITIES AND USE AND PROTECTION OF COMPANY ASSETS
You are prohibited from:
You have a duty to the Company to advance its legitimate interests when the opportunity to do so arises.
You are personally responsible and accountable for the proper expenditure of Company funds, including money spent for travel expenses or for business entertainment. You are also responsible for the proper use of property over which you have control, including both Company property and funds and property that has been entrusted to your custody. Company assets must be used only for proper purposes.
Company property should not be misused. Company property may not be sold, loaned or given away regardless of condition or value, without proper authorization. Each director, officer and employee should protect our assets and ensure their efficient use. Theft, carelessness and waste have a direct impact on the Company’s profitability. Company assets should be used only for legitimate business purposes.
DISCIPLINE FOR NONCOMPLIANCE WITH THIS CODE
Disciplinary actions for violations of this Code of Business Conduct and Ethics can include oral or written reprimands, suspension or termination of employment or a potential civil lawsuit against you.
The violation of laws, rules or regulations, which can subject the Company to fines and other penalties, may result in your criminal prosecution.
DISCLOSURE POLICIES AND CONTROLS
The continuing excellence of the Company’s reputation depends upon our full and complete disclosure of important information about the Company that is used in the securities marketplace. Our financial and non-financial disclosures and filings with the SEC and applicable Canadian securities regulatory authorities must be transparent, accurate and timely. Proper reporting of reliable, truthful and accurate information is a complex process involving cooperation among many of us. We must all work together to insure that reliable, truthful and accurate information is disclosed to the public. The Company must disclose to the SEC, applicable Canadian securities regulatory authorities, current security holders and the investing public information that is required, and any additional information that may be necessary to ensure the required disclosures are not misleading or inaccurate. The Company’s disclosure process is overseen by the CEO, CFO and PAO and you may not make public disclosures independent of the Company’s process. The disclosure process is designed to record, process, summarize and report material information as required by all applicable laws, rules and regulations. Participation in the disclosure process is a requirement of a public company, and full cooperation and participation by the CEO, CFO, PAO and, upon request, other managers and employees in the disclosure process is a requirement of this Code.
Officers and employees must fully comply with their disclosure responsibilities in an accurate and timely manner (within the guidelines of applicable securities regulatory authorities) or be subject to discipline of up to and including termination of employment.
Further information about the Company’s disclosure policies and procedures is contained in the Company’s Disclosure and Confidentiality Policy. A copy of this Policy, as amended from time to time, is provided to each employee of the Company.
ENVIRONMENT, HEALTH AND SAFETY
It is our policy to comply, in all material respects, with applicable health, safety and environmental laws and regulations. Each employee is also expected to comply with our policies, programs, standards and procedures.
FAIR DEALING WITH OTHERS
No director, officer or employee should take unfair advantage of anyone through manipulation, concealment, abuse of privileged information, misrepresentation of material facts or any other unfair-dealing practice.
FILING OF GOVERNMENT REPORTS
Any reports or information provided, on our behalf, to federal, provincial, territorial, state, local or foreign governments should be true, complete and accurate. Any omission, misstatement or lack of attention to detail could result in a violation of the reporting laws, rules and regulations.
INTELLECTUAL PROPERTY: PATENTS, COYRIGHTS AND TRADEMARKS
Except as otherwise agreed to in writing between the Company and an officer or employee, all intellectual property you conceive or develop during the course of your employment shall be the sole property of the Company. The term intellectual property includes any invention, mineral discovery, exploration or other concept, idea, or writing whether protectable or not by foreign copyright, trademark, patent, or common law including, but not limited to designs, materials, compositions of matter, machines, manufactures, processes, improvements, data, computer software, writings, formula, techniques, know-how, methods, as well as improvements thereof or know-how related thereto concerning any past, present, or prospective activities of the Company. Officers and employees must promptly disclose in writing to the Company any intellectual property developed or conceived either solely or with others during the course of your employment and must render any and all aid and assistance, at our expense to secure the appropriate land position/exploration permit, patent, copyright, or trademark protection for such intellectual property.
Copyright laws may protect items posted on website. Unless a website grants permission to download the Internet content you generally only have the legal right to view the content. If you do not have permission to download and distribute specific website content you should contact the Designated Officer.
Any question regarding compliance with the above or your responsibilities under this policy should be directed to the Designated Officer.
INSIDER TRADING OR TIPPING
Directors, officers and employees are directed to the Company’s Share Trading Policy.
NON-RETALIATION FOR REPORTING
In no event will the Company take or threaten any action against you as a reprisal or retaliation for making a complaint or disclosing or reporting information in good faith. However, if a reporting individual was involved in improper activity the individual may be appropriately disciplined even if he or she was the one who disclosed the matter to the Company. In these circumstances, we may consider the conduct of the reporting individual in reporting the information as a mitigating factor in any disciplinary decision.
Retaliation for reporting in good faith, any violation of a law, rule or regulation or a provision of this Code is prohibited. Retaliation will result in discipline up to and including termination of employment and may also result in criminal prosecution.
The use of alcohol, illegal drugs or other prohibited items, including legal drugs that might affect the ability to perform your work duties, is prohibited while on the job. We also prohibit any other use of alcoholic beverages, firearms, weapons or explosives on our property unless authorized by the Designated Officer. You are also prohibited from reporting to work while under the influence of alcohol, illegal drugs or legal drugs which affect the ability to perform your work duties.
Each corporate department is responsible for the maintenance, retrieval, transfer, and destruction of its records in accordance with any established filing procedures, records retention schedules and procedures.
The alteration, destruction or falsification of corporate documents or records may constitute a criminal act. Destroying or altering documents with the intent to obstruct a pending or anticipated official government proceeding is a criminal act.
RELATIONS AMONG EMPLOYEES: RESPECT AND CONTRIBUTION
We function as a team. Your success as part of this team depends on your contribution and ability to inspire the trust and confidence of your coworkers and supervisors. Respect for the rights and dignity of others and a dedication to the good of our Company are essential. A cornerstone of our success is the teamwork of our directors, officers and employees. We must each respect the rights of others while working as a team to fulfill our objectives. To best function as part of a team, you must be trustworthy and dedicated to high standards of performance. The relationships between business groups also require teamwork.
To facilitate respect and contribution among employees, we have implemented the following employment policies:
REPORTING OF CODE VIOLATIONS
You should be alert and sensitive to situations that could result in actions that might violate laws or the standards of conduct set forth in this Code. If you believe your own conduct or that of a fellow employee may have violated any such laws or this Code, you have an obligation to report the matter.
Generally, you should raise such matters first with an immediate supervisor. However, if you are not comfortable bringing the matter up with your immediate supervisor, or do not believe the supervisor has dealt with the matter properly, then you should raise the matter with the Designated Officer or, if a law, rule or regulation is in question, then consult with the Designated Officer, who will consult with or refer you to the appropriate Company legal representatives. The most important point is that possible violations should be reported and we support all means of reporting them.
Directors and officers should report any potential violations of this Code to the Chairman of the Corporate Governance Committee of the Board of Directors.
There shall be no waiver of any part of this Code for any director or officer except by a vote of the Board of Directors. In case a waiver of this Code is granted to a director or officer, the notice of such waiver shall be disclosed as required by applicable law or Stock Exchange rule.
A waiver for a specific event arising under the “Conflicts of Interest” section of this Code may be granted to an employee that is not a director or officer on the approval of two of the following officers: the CEO and CFO. No other waivers of this Code are permitted.
This Code is an attempt to point all of us at the Company in the right direction, but no document can achieve the level of principled compliance that we are seeking. In reality, each of us must strive every day to maintain our awareness of these issues and to comply with the Code’s principles to the best of our abilities. Before we take an action, we must always ask ourselves:
If an action would elicit the wrong answer to any of these questions, do not take it. We cannot expect perfection, but we do expect good faith. If you act in bad faith or fail to report illegal or unethical behavior, then you will be subject to disciplinary procedures. We hope that you agree that the best course of action is to be honest, forthright and loyal at all times.
CERTIFICATE OF ETHICS FOR THE CHIEF EXECUTIVE OFFICER, CHIEF FINANCIAL OFFICER AND PRINCIPAL ACCOUNTING OFFICER
In my role as Chief Executive Officer (“CEO”), Chief Financial Officer (“CFO”) or Principal Accounting Officer (“PAO”) of American CuMo Mining Corporation (the “Company”), I have adhered to and advocated to the best of my knowledge and ability the following principles and responsibilities governing professional conduct and ethics:
I understand that the Code is subject to all applicable laws, rules and regulations.
I understand that there shall be no waiver of, modification of, or change to any part of the Code except by a vote of the Board of Directors. In the event that a waiver of, modification of, or a change to the Code is granted, then the notice of the waiver, modification and/or change shall be disclosed as required by applicable law or regulatory rules.
Shaun Dykes, M.Sc. (Eng); P.Geo