ITC inducted into the UN Global Compact
09 May 2008
ITC has been inducted into the United Nations Global Compact, the world's largest global corporate citizenship initiative. ITC's 4th Sustainability Report, which was submitted to the UN body as a communication on progress (COP), has been approved in terms of the company's implementation of the 10 principles of the UN Global Compact.
Set up in 2000, the UN Global Compact is a global initiative to promote sustainable development and good corporate citizenship. The 10 principles that participants in the Compact are required to embrace, support and enact cover a set of core values in the areas of environment, labour, anti-corruption and human rights.
The Global Compact is a framework for businesses that are committed to aligning their operations and strategies with ten universally accepted principles in the areas of human rights, labour, the environment and anti-corruption . As the world's largest, global corporate citizenship initiative, the Global Compact is first and foremost concerned with exhibiting and building the social legitimacy of business and markets.
These principles are derived from the various Conventions and Declarations, including the Rio Declaration on Environment and Development and the International Labour Organisation's (ILO) Declaration on Fundamental Principles and Rights at Work.
ITC's work in pursuing corporate strategies that build economic, ecological and social capital for the nation have been acclaimed by various international and national institutions. The only company in the world, of its size and diversity, to be carbon-positive, water-positive and nearly zero solid waste discharge, ITC's businesses, rooted in India and particularly in rural areas, have not only created immense value for its shareholders with a 'total shareholder return' of over 45 per cent per annum compounded over the last 20 years, but have created livelihoods for over five million people, many of whom represent the poorest in India.
The company's e-choupal initiative is the world's largest rural digital infrastructure empowering over four million farmers. Around 80,000 hectares of plantations by marginal farmers have been supported by ITC's R&D based clonal propagation programme. More than 35,000 hectares have been brought under ITC's watershed development projects. Integrated animal husbandry programmes have been extended to 175,000 milch animals. Its women empowerment programmes have created over 11,000 rural women entrepreneurs and its supplementary education support has touched the lives of 100,000 children in rural India.
The Global Compact relies on public accountability, transparency, and the enlightened self interest of companies, labour and civil society to initiate and share substantive action in pursuing its ten principles.