The Prime Minister is unveiling a new code of conduct for public servants today, but declined to comment on whether a similar code is needed for members of Parliament.
The State Services Commission has drawn up the new code, which replaces the present one.
It covers 120 agencies and 110,000 civil servants and is expected to come into force on November 30.
While it dictates what is expected of public servants, MPs have no such code of conduct on how they behave in the House.
Helen Clark said yesterday that she did not have a view on whether a code for MPs was needed.
"I was away last week and ... I haven't seen what was proposed or even what the debate was."
The new code for public servants is based on four principles - fairness, impartiality, responsibility and trustworthiness.
The code includes a statement that public servants must "avoid any activities, work or non-work", that may harm the reputation of their organisation. But it will be up to employers to detail which acts are inappropriate and how they will be dealt with.
State Services Commissioner Mark Prebble said the code was flexible and institutions should consider the different role of certain workers.
"Take the declining of gifts, for example.
"It would be entirely inappropriate for many state servants to accept an invitation to a show, but if you're running the Ministry of Culture and Heritage, it's your job to acknowledge what your sponsors are doing.
"The point is institutions face different issues, and trying to get all that detail into one code would be meaningless."
Previous efforts to introduce a code of conduct for MPs have failed.
The Greens, Maori Party, Act and United Future signed a voluntary code of conduct for politicians last week and challenged other parties to do the same, arguing that standards inside the debating chamber had sunk to new lows.
But without the support of Labour or National, it is likely to have the same fate as previous efforts.