Last updated: Tuesday, March 19, 2019


Programme on Benchmarking and Announcing Sustainable Companies 2018 Launched

Posted: Tuesday, May 22, 2018

Sustainable development helps businesses enhance competitiveness, attract investment capital and expand their markets, said Mr Nguyen Quang Vinh, Member of the Standing Committee, General Secretary of the Vietnam Chamber of Commerce and Industry (VCCI), Vice President and General Secretary of the Vietnam Business Council for Sustainable Development (VBCSD), at the launching ceremony of the Programme on Benchmarking and Announcing Sustainable Companies 2018 recently organised by VCCI and VBCSD in Hanoi.

This annual programme was initiated under the governmental guidance stated in Official Announcement 398/TB-VPCP dated December 15, 2015 on ranking sustainable businesses from 2016 onwards. In its two years of deployment, the programme has already been highly appreciated by the business community in Vietnam, recognising the efforts of VCCI in general and VBCSD particularly in encouraging businesses to pay more attention to sustainable development, and to plan and carry out sustainability strategies in business.

In the third edition, the Corporate Sustainability Index (CSI) will continue to be used to measure corporate sustainability. As Vietnam’s first set of sustainability indicators integrated with international standards and practices and adapted to current Vietnamese conditions, CSI has demonstrated its superiority. In addition, CSI features ease of use and high applicability to all businesses irrespective of type, scale or scope of operation.

To increase CSI accessibility for more companies, particularly small and medium-sized enterprises (SMEs), even micros, CSI criteria have been further modified towards user friendliness and simplicity. In addition, joining companies can choose to either file hard copies or soft copies via the internet, thus enabling them to save time and manage their applications more easily.

Accordingly, CSI developed by VCCI together with leading domestic and international specialists is a very effective tool for businesses to apply. 132 CSI criteria are divided into three main pillars: Economy, society and environment. This is a useful tool for business management, helping companies to know what and where they are and pinpoint governance gaps to reduce risks or, in contrast, discern their strengths and capture potential business opportunities from there.

A special feature of the 2018 Programme is that the VBCSD-VCCI has been working with experts to establish a “sustainable development standard”. In addition to honouring the 100 most sustainable companies, qualified ones will also be named “sustainable companies”. This is how VCCI encourages the business community to pursue sustainable development and makes them understand that they are still sustainable even if not among the Top 100.
Speaking at the Launching Ceremony, Mr Nguyen Quang Vinh said, business sustainability is not only a concern of powers but also a compass for human development. By doing better business, we will be able to build a better world.

He said, to integrate and develop in global value chains, the Vietnamese business community needs to change its thinking towards long-term sustainable development rather than running after short-term profit. It is clear that market opportunities worth US$12 trillion by 2030 will be for only visionary companies that place sustainable development at the heart of business strategy.

However, SMEs are not really aware of the importance of sustainable development. This benchmarking and ranking is expected to help them raise their knowledge and realise the opportunities and benefits of sustainable development.

“With the programme, VCCI has ranked and honoured companies that lead and deliver sustainable development in the best manner. This is a laissez-passer for them to enhance credibility among authorities, investors and consumers, helping them attract more investment capital. And, ultimately, we want to build a sustainable business community,” Mr Vinh said.

Also at the launching ceremony, representatives of typical businesses such as Heineken Vietnam and Traphaco shared their experience and business roles in the programme. Mr Matt Wilson, Director of Corporate Affairs of Heineken Vietnam, said, CSI100 is a concrete guide for businesses to achieve sustainable development goals. Joining the programme, they will have the chance to measure the result of carrying out sustainable development goals. By securing high rankings, they will have higher competitiveness, and strengthen trust and prestige among partners and customers.

In 2017, the Programme on Benchmarking and Announcing Sustainable Companies 2016, the second edition, attracted more than 500 companies engaged in various fields across the country and named Top 100 sustainable companies in Vietnam. 2018 is the third year the programme was jointly launched by VCCI/VBCSD, the Ministry of Labour, Invalids and Social Affairs (MOLISA), the Ministry of Natural Resources and Environment (MONRE) and the Vietnam General Confederation of Labour (VGCL).

The honouring ceremony is expected to take place in Hanoi in November.

Thu Ha

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