Diversified natural resources group Eurasian Resources Group (ERG) has joined the first conference by Russian bank Sberbank (Sber) to establish the environmental, social and governance (ESG) Alliance.
The alliance will aim to facilitate the transition to sustainable economic development by strengthening environmental protection, supporting social development and enabling business growth, while reducing the consumption of natural resources.
“We are pleased that our long-term partnership with Sber has led to fruitful cooperation in a number of new areas. The alliance's mission of promoting a sustainable economic development model and cross-sector collaboration in the field of ESG is closely aligned with [our] ESG goals.
“We look forward to working together and exchanging experience with Sber and other leading Russian and international peers in the ESG Alliance. This collaboration will be very useful for the development of individual industries and sectors, including mining and metals, and we support Sber's initiative to form such an alliance,” ERG CEO Benedikt Sobotka said at a signing ceremony earlier this month.
“As we discussed the issues of corporate social responsibility, transparent and impactful corporate governance and environmental protection, we came to an understanding that leading companies needed to combine their efforts to drive this agenda in the country.
“We realised that we had to work on shaping regulatory frameworks, standards and implementation control procedures, forming a new legislation that will stimulate all market participants to comply with ESG standards, and promoting the interests of Russia and Russian companies internationally. These are the key objectives that form the core of the ESG Alliance’s charter,” Sber executive chairperson and CEO Herman Gref said.
The founding members of the alliance include 28 companies, which are responsible for 10% of the Russian gross domestic product and represent 18 sectors of the Russian economy.
Membership in the alliance is voluntary.
Alongside Sber and ERG, managers of the following companies joined the conference: Avtoban, AFK Sistema, Gazprom Neft, EuroChem, Kolmar Group, Metalloinvest, Uralchem, Polyus, Prosveshcheniye, RUSAL, R-Pharm, SIBUR Holding, Solar Systems, SUEK, T Plus, TechnoNICOL, Transmashholding, Delo holding company, Uralkali, Pharmstandard, Unilever Rus, En+ Group, Mercury Retail Holding, PLC O1 Properties, Vos’hod Development and X5 Group.
The ESG Alliance will act as a platform for stakeholders from across industry, government and civil society to exchange dialogue, share knowledge and expertise, and develop and promote new standards in the field of ESG.
This includes setting out improved industry guidelines, forming a common framework for assessment and reporting in this area, and rolling out joint programmes to achieve sustainable development goals and investment in innovative projects focused on ESG transformation.