Promoting CSR within the Supply Chain

Policy

As the Sojitz Group conducts a broad range of businesses through its global supply chains, we see the promotion of CSR within the supply chain as an important issue. In April 2010, we created the ‘Sojitz Group’ CSR Action Guidelines based on the ten principles of the United Nations Global Compact. We share these guidelines with our suppliers in order to conduct business in harmony with both society and the environment.

In September 2015, we established a wood procurement policy. This policy embodies our supply chain CSR guidelines within the context of our wood-related businesses and was drafted through consultation with WWF Japan.

Sojitz Group CSR Action Guidelines for Supply Chains

The Sojitz Group deals with business partners in diverse countries and regions. It is therefore necessary to promote CSR initiatives in supply chains that take into account the characteristics of the industries involved.
The Sojitz Group seeks the understanding and implementation of the following items by its suppliers as it strives with them to do business in harmony with society and the environment.

  1. 1.We shall respect the human rights of employees, and never treat employees in an inhumane manner.
  2. 2.We shall prevent forced labor, child labor and unfair low-wage labor.
  3. 3.We shall not practice discrimination in hiring and employment.
  4. 4.We shall respect the rights of employees to organize for smooth negotiation between labor and management.
  5. 5.We shall strive to provide employees with a safe, sanitary and healthy work environment.
  6. 6.In the course of conducting business activities, we shall duly consider the need to conserve ecosystems as well as local and global environments, and strive to prevent the occurrence of any environmental pollution.
  7. 7.We shall observe all relevant laws and regulations, ensure fair transactions and prevent corruption.
  8. 8.We shall ensure the quality and safety of products and services.
  9. 9.We shall disclose information regarding the above items in a timely and appropriate manner.

 

Wood Procurement Policy

<Scope>

This policy covers all roundwood; sawnwood and wood based panels; paper manufacturing materials such as wood chips, particles, and pulp; paper products; and woody biomass handled by Sojitz and its consolidated subsidiaries. (Hereafter, “wood.”)

<Policy>

In honoring the Sojitz Group Statement, we are committed to do our best to cooperate with business partners to procure wood in line with the following policies, based on the Sojitz Group CSR Action Guidelines for Supply Chains.

  1. 1.Legality
    We will not handle wood obtained through illegal logging.
  2. 2.Environmental Consideration
    We will not handle wood obtained through logging methods which are detrimental to high conservation value forests.
  3. 3.Social Consideration
    In view of logging’s potential to adversely impact human rights, we will seek to mitigate any negative impact associated with wood procurement.

<Administering this Policy>

  1. We will endeavor to take not only the legality of the logging into consideration, but also its impact on the environment and society at large.
  2. We intend to set concrete quantitative targets in order to promote this policy. These targets are to be made public immediately after they are decided.
  3. We aim to implement the policy in phases according to the particular characteristics of our products as well as risk conditions in the countries and regions in which we conduct business. Also, in order to bolster our initiatives, we will maintain appropriate communication with stakeholders, such as business partners, local communities and governments.
  4. We will regularly monitor the policy’s implementation and conduct regular reviews of the policy to make improvements as needed.
  5. We will release information regarding the implementation of this policy as appropriate via our website and other communication channels.

 

Initiatives

Initiatives in the Year Ended March 31st, 2015

■Expanding the Scope of Message Penetration

From Sojitz’s many businesses, we will pick out those which prioritize considerations for social and environmental impact, such as the import of products from emerging countries, acquisition of interests/project investment in emerging countries, and retail businesses. Afterwards, we will implement focused message penetration via training held for each business department* at both Sojitz Tokyo Head Office and our Group companies.
*Sojitz Tokyo Head Office: for each department; Group companies: for each organizational unit in charge of a relevant business

We have broadened the scope of this training from that of FY2013 which focused on management-level employees. This has allowed us to develop and implement a new basic training program to explain the connection between business and CSR. It has so far been provided to 400 employees, while the original hands-on program has been provided to 185.

Outlook for the Year Ended March 31st,  2016

We will receive information from departments in charge of businesses which prioritize consideration for social and environmental impact and continue to utilize it as a communication tool to share understanding and exchange information with business partners. Also, we will aim to create a system for sustainable communication with partners, through means such as expanding the scope of the previously business department-centered training to include the corporate departments.

Initiatives in the Year Ended March 31, 2014

The Sojitz Group operates businesses globally in a wide range of fields, including machinery, energy, chemicals, and consumer lifestyle. It plays a role in both trading and business investments and receives diverse requests and expectations from stakeholders concerning supply chain CSR.

In the year ended March 31, 2014, we pursued initiatives aimed at promoting understanding of supply chain CSR within the Group, mainly including training programs, discussions, and seminars concerning specific businesses, to ensure that the Sojitz Group employees will meet the above requests and expectations and practice supply chain CSR in each business.

■Enhancement of Training Programs and Exchange of Opinions Aimed at Practicing Supply Chain CSR

We developed and held a participatory training session aimed at having trainees realize how a business is assessed and influenced by stakeholders at each level of promotion of supply chain CSR.

The seminar was held for managerial employees and attended by a total of 277 people including general managers and section chiefs from Head Office and core operating companies of the Group. In addition to receiving training, participants reviewed the social and environmental impact of businesses needing special attention and exchanged opinions on promoting supply chain CSR more effectively at business sites, citing the main businesses of each participant’s departments as examples.

In the discussion, a variety of ideas for boosting communication with business partners were suggested. Based on those ideas, tools for raising awareness and communication tools for supporting supply chain CSR were diversified.

 

■Developing Awareness through a Seminar: Business and Human Rights

We held a seminar under the theme of “Business and Human Rights,” inviting Mr. Keiichi Ushijima, the Principal Fellow of Ernst & Young Institute Co., Ltd. Mr. Ushijima spoke on the human rights awareness required of the Sojitz Group today, the need for awareness of human rights issues along the entire supply chain, and the handling of human rights issues by companies, referring to human rights issues he had actually experienced.

Many of the participants realized the importance of the relationship between business and human rights and of human rights awareness along the entire supply chain. Comments included, “I realized that human rights are perceived differently between Japan and the international society,” “I renewed my awareness that human rights risks may be a threat to the company’s sustainability” and “The seminar gave me a sense of urgency and made me realize the need for human rights considerations.”
(This seminar was held at the Tokyo Head Office of Sojitz Corporation in January 2014, attended by 65 officers and employees of the Sojitz Group.)

Past Supplier’s View

March 31, 2013

A Supplier’s View(Comment from the questionnaire conducted in the year ended March 31, 2013)

下忠宏 生活産業部門 食料担当部門長補佐
Ensuring the safety of employees is the number-one priority of managers of manufacturing companies, followed by the environment. It is hard for a company to stay in business if it causes trouble for society. The concept of “safety first” is taken for granted in Japan, but establishing this concept at overseas sites requires repeated and sustained communication of its priority from management. Only then do employees realize the prime importance of safety, and eventually it becomes routine. We will continue our efforts until “safety first” is taken for granted. The result will be a safe work environment for employees. I believe that is the first responsibility of managers.

Takafumi Matsumoto
President Vietnam Japan Chip Corporation Ltd.

 

Safety is our number-one priority onsite. This commitment includes conducting unannounced inspections. In most of the reforestation, an acacia hybrid is used to restore soil fertility. We are also considering mixed planting with other tree species in the future.
Woodchips are piled as high as 30 meters, and handling heavy machinery involves risks, so regular operational training is provided. Posting the number of accidentfree days in places where employees gather promotes greater safety awareness.

[Related Data] Project Story: Afforestation and Woodchip Production Business Vietnam

March 31, 2012

A Supplier's View(Comment from the questionnaire conducted in the year ended March 31, 2012)

Today, CSR initiatives are essential to business growth. For example, improvement of working conditions stabilizes employment for companies as members of global society. Moreover, Pinghu Xinchengda Garments emphasizes dialogue with stakeholders in promoting CSR activities. Working toward ongoing improvement in awareness through dialogue with both employees and business partners is conducive to long-term mutual benefits.

Tao Xue Qin (right)
Vice President
Pinghu Xinchengda Garments Co., Ltd.

March 31, 2011

A Supplier's View(Comment from the questionnaire conducted in the year ended March 31, 2011)

Asian Transmission Corporation (ATC) has been guided by its corporate mission: “continuing growth through highest quality, for lifetime partners, investors, suppliers and the government.” ATC has undertaken several initiatives in observance of this corporate mission, including: implementing fair labor standards; providing employees with a safe and healthy work environment; and operating its own waste water treatment facility to contribute in the abatement of pollution in Laguna Lake in the Philippines. Without consciously knowing it, these initiatives are the main ingredients of what we call CSR. We all have a responsibility to each other and the world around us. Our actions affect a large number of stakeholders. It is therefore necessary that a CSR strategy should be aligned with Sojitz and other partners so that we head in a common direction together.

Mr. Roderick M.Tan Vice President-Personnel & Legal Asian Transmission Corporation (ATC)

Mr. Roderick M.Tan
Vice President-Personnel & Legal
Asian Transmission Corporation

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