Estate agents who belong to the RICS may have to sign up to a new professional statement pledging to avoid and report suspicions of bribery, corruption, money laundering and terrorist financing.
RICS said many of its members already follow rules that avoid these risks but a new global consultation among all its members will put their obligations in writing in the form of a professional statement.
The draft statement provides guidance on avoiding bribery and corruption by stating all RICS members must declare any gifts, entertainment, hospitality and charitable donations and must report any concerns of breaches of anti-bribery and corruption laws.
On avoiding money laundering and terrorist financing, the statement says RICS members must identify the beneficial owner of a company/client involved within a transaction, report suspicious activity and go on any training in these areas offered by their employer or regulator.
Peter Bolton King, global director of professionalism and ethics for RICS, said: “Governments legislate against these crimes; some organisations have strict policies that guard against them and most individuals understand the repercussions associated with them.
“As a global professional body, RICS has a responsibility to ensure that we set out the minimum requirements and obligations for our professionals and regulated firms to ensure their activities do not involve or facilitate bribery, corruption, money laundering or terrorist financing.
“It is therefore imperative that our practitioners, regulated firms, clients of surveying services and other stakeholders participate in the consultation and that our final standard reflects the reality of a modern profession and professional practice.”
The consultation closes on July 31.