Important Improvement in CSI Program 2021

1:40:39 PM | 24/5/2021

The Program on Benchmarking and Announcing Sustainable Companies in Vietnam (CSI Program) 2021 has been launched by the Vietnam Chamber of Commerce and Industry (VCCI) and the Vietnam Business Council for Sustainable Development (VBCSD) - VCCI.

Starting the sixth edition under the direction of the Government, VCCI continues to coordinate with the Ministry of Labor, Invalids and Social Affairs, the Ministry of Natural Resources and Environment and the Vietnam General Confederation of Labor to launch the CSI Program to qualify and honor responsible businesses in all three aspects: Economy, society and environment. The Corporate Sustainability Index (CSI) continues to be used as a gauge of sustainability of candidate businesses.

In 2021, the Program will accept registration applications from businesses of all sizes and fields across the country, either via delivery of hard copies or online declaration, free of charge. Candidate companies will declare information according to the CSI 2021 Criteria with 119 indicators in four areas: Sustainability Performance Index, Governance Index; Environmental Index; and Labor-Social Index.

The most important progress of CSI 2021 is the decentralization of indicators into three categories for different business sizes. 53 M indicators are universal for all businesses and are minimum metrics for small and micro businesses. 28 C indicators (basic) for medium and large enterprises and 38 A indicators (advanced) are designed for candidate companies that, in addition to complying with the law, have also built a healthy business ecosystem that ensures sustainable business benefits for partners and other stakeholders.

This effort of the Program Organizing Committee aims to further encourage businesses of all forms and sizes to engage in responsible business. Small and micro companies need to ensure the full implementation of 53 M indicators and they can declare C and A indicators as well, depending on their actual business, to get extra bonus points from the Organizing Committee. Similarly, medium and large companies need to make sure to declare enough information on M and C indicators and can declare A indicators to get bonus points.

Mr. Nguyen Quang Vinh, General Secretary of VCCI and Executive Vice President of VBCSD, stressed that “By decentralizing CSI 2021 indicators to different business sizes, we want to reemphasize and convey the message “sustainable development is not superficial or only for big businesses but it is essential and materialized by good legal practices. Sustainability is absolutely possible at all levels of business.” CSI is particularly useful for domestic companies, 95% of which are small and medium in size. Based on the levels of indicators, instead of spending a lot of effort on researching information matrix, candidates can also envision a roadmap for implementing sustainable development from small to large scale so as to build a business strategy/plan that matches their current capacity and future prospect. This helps them, especially domestic ones, reduce a lot of time and resources in sustainable corporate governance.

In addition, the CSI 2021 Program has two new sub-awards on Gender Equality in the Workplace and Children's Rights in Business, which interest the world business community, representing the vision of "leaving no one behind" in a sustainable business corporate culture.

Talking about children's rights in business, Ms. Rana Flowers, UNICEF Representative in Vietnam, said, “Businesses still interact directly and indirectly with children every day because they are young workers and the offspring of employees, consumers and the social community. Therefore, they can help improve children's lives with their responsible business policies and practices toward sustainable development. Respecting children's rights as part of a corporate sustainability program will help build stronger communities, which is essential to create an effective, inclusive and secure business environment."

Ms. Le Thanh Hang, Executive Director of the Vietnam Business Coalition for Women's Empowerment (VBCWE), said, “Improving gender equality in the workplace contributes significantly to economic growth, labor productivity, talent attraction and employment - key factors for corporate sustainability. VBCWE is delighted to partner with the Gender equity in the Workplace Award within the framework of the CSI 2021 Program. The award is an opportunity for Vietnamese businesses to get closer to international standards on gender equality and move towards an equal, diverse and sustainable working environment.”

VBCSD-VCCI will organize training courses, either physically or online, on corporate governance in general and CSI application to corporate governance in particular in June and July 2021. The deadline for CSI application submission is August 15, 2021. Businesses can refer to the Program at the website http://vbcsd.vn/csi.asp.

Contact:

• Ms. Tran Thi Thu Thuy, Communications Officer, VBCSD

Email: thuyttt@vcci.com.vn | Tel: 0989749012

• Ms. Nguyen Thi Quynh Nga, CSI Officer, VBCSD

Email: ngantq@vcci.com.vn

By Huong Ly, Vietnam Business Forum