CSR Advisory Board 2015
ITOCHU Corporation’s management and outside stakeholders held CSR Advisory Board meeting at the Tokyo Head Office on February 10th to discuss about CSR issues. The purpose of CSR Advisory Board is to hold a dialogue with external stakeholders about whether the direction of CSR approach matches the needs of society in the context of the diversification and expansion of the business activities. Theme of this year’s board discussion was “The Impact of Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) on Business Activities.” The United Nations has adopted the 17 Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) to be achieved by 2030, in September 2015. The discussion centered on several SDGs goals, quality education, affordable and clean energy and decent work and economic growth. Specialists from the financial sector, the United Nations, and an academic sector provided opinions on environmental investment and other companies’ trends during the lively discussion. They also stated the importance of tying initiatives for the SDGs to corporate strategies, under the spirit of sampo yoshi, because contributing to the acheivement of the SDGs through business showes that the Company will grow together with society, in the medium to long term. The opinions and input that the advisors provided will be reflected in future CSR promotion. We will continue to communicate our CSR activities to our stakeholders.
February 10, 2016
The Impact of Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) on Business Activities
Representative views of participants
The greatest change that resulted from replacing MDGs with SDGs is the shift from the theme of overcoming issues, such as poverty in developing countries to the greater theme of solving global economic, environmental, and social issues, both in developing countries and in other nations around the world. It is important to take initiatives that create a profit structure for expanding job opportunities. I request that ITOCHU continue working to expand business operations based on the idea that SDGs are a form of business activity, an example of which is the Pre Organic Cotton (POC) Program.
The SDGs, which aim to solve worldwide problems, possess many business seeds that help to improve corporate value. Expanding opportunities by viewing business from diverse perspectives based on SDGs will enable the company to survive in a highly competitive age. While the idea of zero-carbon world is generating interest, moving forward I believe ITOCHU will continue to actively promote businesses such as the solar power generation business, geothermal power generation business, wind power generation business, rechargeable battery business, and operate new businesses in Africa.
ESG investment (investment that takes into consideration the environment, society, and governance) is poised to become the mainstream thinking internationally. For example, ESG constitutes 60% of all the invested assets in Europe. Interest in ESG has been growing rapidly among Japanese investors as well. It will be beneficial for a company to continue to take action to address social issues, such as POC and the use of renewable energy for tackling climate change, and explain this action to investors by associating its long-term strategies with SDGs.