Defense Production Minister Zubaida Jalal said on Friday that the Securities and Exchange Commission of Pakistan (SECP) should review its guidelines related to the Corporate Social Responsibility (CSR) for the Pakistani business sector and align them with the Sustainable Development Goals-2030 of United Nations.
The minister expressed these views while chairing one of the sessions of the 11th International CSR Summit and Awards-2019, organized by the National Forum for Environment and Health (NFEH).
Over 55 companies were given awards on the occasion for their commendable performance in the arena of CSR during the last year.
The minister said that the government, corporate sector, and civil society in Pakistan should align their vision and efforts to do mandatory social work in the society, especially to achieve the goal of promoting education among the backward and destitute sections of the population.
She said that business initiatives being launched in the country under the umbrella of China Pakistan Economic Corridor (EPEC) project should lead to socially responsible investments for the good of the local communities.
The minister said that standardization should be done in the country to define the standards of socially responsible investments by the corporate sector and also to bring transparency in their workings and spending.
She said that Pakistan could easily transform into a country with sustainable development if the government, corporate sector, and civil society combine their efforts and resources for the benefit of society.
Speaking on the occasion, Ambassador of Germany to Pakistan Martin Kobler said that it would be unfeasible to ask German companies to invest in the industrial estates of Pakistan where the industries mostly didn’t take care about the damage being done by them to the environment.
He said that the corporate and industrial sector in Pakistan should take care of the environment in their surroundings and should also observe stringent safety standards for laborers working in the factories.
The envoy said that every company should switch to consuming bio-degradable plastic for packing and other purposes in order to safeguard the environment.
Sindh Engro Coal Mining Company Chairman Khurshid Anwer Jamali, in his address, said that the first Watt of electricity based on Thar coal would be produced in the third week of February 2019, adding that this would also lead to the massive social transformation of people living in Islamkot area where the mining project is being undertaken to extract coal for electricity production.
He said that coal-based power generation plants were being installed in Thar area, which meets the national and international environmental standards including that of the World Bank.
LEAD Pakistan CEO Ali Tauqeer Sheikh said that every business and the industrial entity should become socially and environmentally responsible, adding that efforts to alleviate poverty in Pakistan should also tackle challenges to the climate, as poverty could not be overcome without combating the climate problem.
NFEH President Naeem Qureshi on the occasion stated that CSR Summit and Awards were conducted on an annual basis to encourage and appreciate the excellent social work of the Pakistani corporate sector while setting an example to be followed by the other concerned sections of the society.