Sumitomo Mitsui Trust Group promotes strategic CSR to create shared value through the following management system.
In order to clarify the Group's basic stance and employees' attitudes toward CSR, we drew up the “Sustainable Policy” in April 2010. In addition, we have drawn up the “Environmental Policy,” “Action Guidelines for Mitigating Climate Change,” and “Action Guidelines for Preserving Biodiversity,” which serve as codes of conduct for all employees of the Group.
- Basic Policy on the Social Responsibility of Sumitomo Mitsui Trust Group (Sustainability Policy)
- Human Rights Policy (Established on December 1, 2013)
- Environmental Policy
- Action Guidelines for Mitigating Climate Change
- Action Guidelines for Preserving Biodiversity
- CSR Procurement Policy (Established on January 19, 2015)
The Group has established a CSR committee chaired by the President of Sumitomo Mitsui Trust Holdings, Inc. as a cross-company management organization to ensure that the entire group maintains a unified direction in the promotion of CSR. Individual CSR promotion systems have also been established at the Group companies (the promoting entities), through which CSR activities are conducted. In particular, the business offices of subsidiary trust banks across Japan appoint CSR officers and coordinators to conduct their own activities that are specific to the local community
At the Group, the CSR Promotion Office, under the Corporate Planning Department of Sumitomo Mitsui Trust Holdings, is responsible for overseeing CSR activities. The office performs the role of promoting CSR activities of group companies through a semiannual rotation of the PDCA cycle in accordance with the promotion policy determined by the office. Furthermore, the CSR Promotion Office examines social and environmental issues and is also involved in the development of financial instruments and services that contribute to solving such problems. Specifically, with regard to the various pressing issues facing Japan, such as energy-related issues and the rapidly aging society, the CSR Promotion Office is looking to the field of finance for answers. To that end, it is pursuing product development through collaboration with those departments in the Group with the necessary functions.
At the same time, the promotion of CSR activities (“With You” activities) at business offices across Japan is also an important function of the CSR Promotion Office. CSR officers and coordinators at branches, together with the CSR Promotion Office, are considering what is needed for the Group to promote CSR activities that are specific to local communities, and they are making preparations to go ahead with initiatives.
Furthermore, to practice such CSR activities in an integrated manner, the Group promotes CSR activities by creating the following catch-phrases.
We have coined the word “Eco-Trustution” to represent such environmental initiatives. Under this concept, we will provide solutions to ecological issues through the use of our trust function. We will continue to develop and provide solution-based financial instruments and services.
We will keep making efforts to be a good citizen for customers and local communities. We conduct various kinds of social activities with this in mind.
The Group has signed on to various international guidelines and principles involving corporate conduct and make efforts to implement them.
The United Nations Global Compact
The UN Global Compact, proposed by former UN Secretary-General Kofi Annan, is a code of conduct regarding human rights, labor, the environment, and anti-corruption. Signatory companies are called on to take measures to implement the compact. In July 2005, the Group signed the compact, becoming the first Japanese bank to do so, and declared its resolve to act as a good corporate citizen by complying with and promoting the code of conduct. The Group also became a member of the Global Compact Japan Network (GC-JN), in which signatory companies of the UN Global Compact participate.
The United Nations Global Compact
- Human Rights:
- Principle 1: Businesses should support and respect the protection of internationally proclaimed human rights; and
- Principle 2: make sure that they are not complicit in human rights abuses.
- Principle 3: Businesses should uphold the freedom of association and the effective recognition of the right to collective bargaining;
- Principle 4: the elimination of all forms of forced and compulsory labour;
- Principle 5: the effective abolition of child labour; and
- Principle 6: the elimination of discrimination in respect of employment and occupation.
- Principle 7: Businesses should support a precautionary approach to environmental challenges;
- Principle 8: undertake initiatives to promote greater environmental responsibility; and
- Principle 9: encourage the development and diffusion of environmentally friendly technologies.
- Principle10: Businesses should work against corruption in all its forms, including extortion and bribery.
United Environment Programme Finance Initiative (UNEP FI)
The UNEP FI is an international network that encourages financial institutions to take action to preserve the environment and to make development sustainable. The Group has proactively supported UNEP FI ever since it became the first Japanese trust bank to sign on to it in October 2003.
Principles for Responsible Investment
The Group companies became a signatory of the Principles for Responsible Investment, which were jointly established by the U.N. Global Compact and the UNEP FI. These principles require institutional investors and fund management institutions to give consideration to ESG (Environmental, Social, and Governance) factors when making investment decisions.
Leadership Declaration under the Business and Biodiversity Initiative “Biodiversity in Good Company”
At the ninth meeting of the Conference of the Parties to the Convention on Biological Diversity held in May 2008 in Bonn, Germany, the Group, together with 33 other companies from around the world, signed a leadership declaration under the Business and Biodiversity Initiative “Biodiversity in Good Company,” which was led by the German government. Since that time, we have been playing a role as a leading company in this field and making proactive efforts to address this issue.
Carbon Disclosure Project (CDP)
Under the CDP, institutional investors and financial institutions around the world cooperate in urging companies to disclose information regarding their greenhouse gas emissions. The Group joined the CDP in January 2007.
Participation in the UNEP FI Property Working Group (UNEP FI PWG)
The UNEP FI PWG is one of the working groups formed by signatory institutions of the UNEP FI to promote property finance that facilitates sustainable development, namely Responsible Property Investment (RPI). In addition to joining the working group in June2007, the Group became a member of the media team that promotes RPI and conducts activities as one of its leading members.
Membership in Business for Social Responsibility (BSR)
BSR, based in the United States, is an organization that promotes CSR, and it is engaged in the development of sustainable business strategies through collaboration with more than 250 member companies all over the world. In January 2010, the Group became a member of BSR and is receiving various forms of support in promoting CSR that is specific to its business, such as the provision of research information on China Stock SRI funds and the dispatch of lecturers to training programs for managers.
Principles for Financial Action towards a Sustainable Society
Sumitomo Mitsui Trust Group is a signatory to the “Principles for Financial Action towards a Sustainable Society,” drafted in October 2011. These principles set out guidelines on the responsibilities and roles of financial institutions, including banks, insurance, securities, and fund management companies, needed for the creation of a sustainable society. The Group played a central role in establishing the principles and signed it in December 2011.
A Signatory to the Equator Principles
The Equator Principles are international guidelines for private-sector financial institutions concerning project finance implementation that call on them to take fully into consideration the environmental and social impacts of projects. Sumitomo Mitsui Trust Bank, Limited (SuMi TRUST Bank) became a signatory to the Equator Principles in February 2016.
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