This year marks the sixth year of our journey to embed sustainability
at the core of our business and sustain our positive impact on current
and future generations. Our commitment to sustainability
continues to solidify each year, and permeates all aspects
of our business across the five sustainability pillars that
we have identified, including best practice Corporate
Governance, amplified Economic Development, balanced
Community Development, energised Human Development
and pre-cautionary Environmental Protection.
Important organisational milestones for our CSR journey included
the setting up of a stand-alone CSR unit in 2010, the establishment
of a CSR Committee and a formal CSR policy in 2012, the piloting
of ISO 26000 Guidance in 2012, the adoption of GRI reporting
guidance as of 2013, and adopting the principles of the UN Global
Compact as of 2015.
Our approach to sustainability is anchored in the principles
of Creating Shared Value (CSV), particularly given the context
of Lebanon where the improvement of the quality of life hinges
on active business involvement and participation in the context of
responsible business practice and partnerships for generating, scaling
and engraining positive social impact.
The recent launch of the UN Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs)
opened up new opportunities for us to synchronise our efforts with
broader development goals and aspirations in our attempts to create
shared value while sustaining and engraining impact.
This year has marked our pledge to five of the SDGs,
in particular Decent Work and Economic Growth
(SDG 8) and Industry, Innovation and Infrastructure
(SDG 9) as aligned to our business strategy.
Additional and on-going commitments have been kept
in the realm of Quality Education (SDG 4) and Gender
Equality (SDG 5) in an institution that has always regarded
every members of its human capital equally in dignity,
appreciation and worth.
Finally, the role we cherish in protecting our environment
innovatively through our carbon footprint microsite
engaging the young generation to commit towards the
pledge our nation has taken during COP 21 coupled with
signing the Lebanon Climate Act in its introductory phase
is also of importance to future generations and our own
sustainability as Climate Action (SDG13).
Our choice of those specific SDGs was grounded in a careful stakeholder
engagement process and a synthesis exercise that helped us in mapping
our five CSR pillars and the various initiatives we have under each
to the SDGs that were most synchronised with our strategy. We
are thus making a concerted effort this year to link our
CSR agenda with the broader SDGs, particularly in areas
where we believe we can contribute in a meaningful way.