In March 2009, the Sumitomo Corporation Group signed the UN Global Compact and declared its support for the 10 principles, as this international CSR-related initiative shares the same values as our Corporate Mission Statement. With our participation in the Global Compact, we committed ourselves to further increasing corporate value by constantly seeking out areas of our business activities that can be improved in light of the values advocated by the 10 principles.
Moreover, Sumitomo Corporation actively participates as a Board Member of the Global Compact Network Japan, a local Global Compact network. In fiscal 2014, we took part in study groups focused on the themes of human rights due diligence, environmental management, and reporting. Through this involvement, we acquired information on recent global trends in these areas, learned of examples of superior initiatives, and were provided insight from specialists. This knowledge was utilized to help the Company promote CSR.
The Global Compact (GC) was proposed by the former UN Secretary General Kofi Annan at the World Economic Forum (in Davos) in 1999 and officially launched in 2000 at the UN Headquarters in New York. The GC is an initiative aimed at realizing the sustainable growth of the global economy through the voluntary participation of businesses in a worldwide network. The UN invites companies and organizations from around the world to join in the GC and currently has over 13,000 companies and organizations from approximately 160 countries participating. The GC has compiled 10 universal principles recognized by the international community based on international agreements in the areas of human rights, labour standards, environment and anti-corruption. Participating companies adopt the 10 principles into their business operations and strategies and are expected to assume responsible and creative leadership as a good corporate citizen for the purpose of achieving sustainable growth.
We also support the Universal Declaraion of Human Rights, which the 10 principles of the UN Global Compact are derived from.