|The Board adopts an inclusive approach by considering and balancing the needs and interests of material stakeholders, as part of its overall responsibility to ensure that the best interests of the company are served.|
This Pillar (“Managing Stakeholders Relationships”), Principle 13 and its Provisions are new to the 2018 Code.
The fact is that every company operates in a multifaceted environment populated by many disparate stakeholders, including shareholders, employees, customers, suppliers, regulators, the media, the broader community, and even the environment.
The inclusion of this Principle reflects the increasing consciousness of the existence of other stakeholders beyond the shareholders, and of the impact of corporate activities on the environment and society. Such awareness is partially the result of much effort by the sustainability movement for companies to respond to the concerns about climate change, adverse social and community impact of poor corporate behaviour, and related corporate governance issues.
Stakeholder engagement refers to the continuous process by which the company purposefully takes into account and cultivates relationships with its stakeholders to work towards broad outcomes.
Each stakeholder has its respective interests, rights and expectations of the company. The Board plays an important role in developing a holistic approach to understanding the different stakeholders and their needs.
The Provisions describe:
- The need to identify, engage and manage material stakeholders (Provision 13.1).
- The need to communicate strategy and key areas of focus in stakeholder management (Provision 13.2).
- The use of a corporate website for engaging with stakeholders (Provision 13.3).
This Principle and its Provisions should be read in conjunction with the sustainability reporting requirements required under the Listing Rules: MR 711A and MR 771B, and CR 711A and CR 711B (Sustainability Report), and MR Practice Note 7.6 and CR Practice Note 7F (Sustainability Reporting Guide).
The company has arrangements in place to identify and engage with its material stakeholder groups and to manage its relationships with such groups.
The company discloses in its annual report its strategy and key areas of focus in relation to the management of stakeholder relationships during the reporting period.
The company maintains a current corporate website to communicate and engage with stakeholders.