Initiatives to Promote Sustainability

Sustainability Promotion Flow

Having established the ITOCHU Group Sustainability Policy in accordance with its corporate mission and changes in the external environment, ITOCHU promotes sustainability initiatives systematically throughout its organization. Of particular note, each Division Company and administrative division incorporates ITOCHU’s material issues, which are identified as issues to be addressed with priority, into Sustainability Action Plans. We will continue to sustainably enhance corporate value and resolve social issues through our business activities, namely trade and business investment, while ensuring that we maintain and improve profitability.

Structure for Promoting Sustainability

The Sustainability Management Division plans measures to advance sustainability. After these are decided by the CAO, they are carried out by each organization. The Sustainability Committee deliberates and makes decisions concerning formulation and revision of basic policies and important matters. Through dialogue with stakeholders such as the Sustainability Advisory Board, we gain an understanding of society’s expectations and demands, etc., which we use in our efforts to promote sustainability.

Identification and Review of Material Issues

Since ITOCHU first identified material issues in 2013, we have conducted regular reviews based on trends in the international community and the expectations of stakeholders. In FYE 2019, when the previous medium-term management plan kicked off, we identified seven material issues based on the adoption of the SDGs, the Paris Agreement on climate change coming into effect, and other social developments and changes affecting business. We continue to apply the same material issues for “Brand-new Deal 2023.”

Expanding Sustainability-Related Disclosure

The Group places great importance on dialogue with various stakeholders, including NGOs, NPOs, and local communities, as well as investors, shareholders, business partners, and employees. To provide wider access to the Company’s sustainability-related information, we have expanded our disclosures through our sustainability website and ESG report. By recognizing stakeholder expectations and concerns, ITOCHU is reflecting measures to address these issues in its business activities and promote sustainability.

Our proactive attitude towards disclosure has helped improve our sustainability rating. In December 2020, ITOCHU received the highest AAA rating for the first time as a general trading company in the MSCI ESG Rating. As a result, we were included in all the ESG-related indices adopted by the GPIF (→ ESG Data[PDF]), and ITOCHU became the GPIF’s No. 1 ESG investment among general trading companies in FYE 2021.

Going forward, we will continue expanding sustainability-related disclosures while emphasizing dialogue with stakeholders.

Establishment of the ITOCHU SDGs STUDIO

We established the ITOCHU SDGs STUDIO in April 2021, as a base for boosting awareness of worldwide initiatives related to all of the SDGs. This unique place supports not just the Company’s SDG initiatives but also worldwide initiatives related to the SDGs, and the studio provides an events space and recording booth with the aim of contributing to a sustainable society. The studio hosts various events and produces radio shows as a way regular people can learn about how the SDGs are relevant to their own lives.