Güler Sabanci, Gave A Speech At The Opening Plenary Of The United Nations Global Compact Leaders’ Summit

20.09.2013
  • GÜLER SABANCI: “MY UNDERSTANDING OF SUSTAINABILITY: WE MUST MEET THE REQUIREMENTS OF THE PRESENT WITHOUT COMPROMISING THE ABILITY OF FUTURE GENERATIONS TO MEET THEIR OWN REQUIREMENTS”
  • “AS SABANCI GROUP, WE ARE AIMING FOR ZERO WASTE BY 2015”
  • “ALMOST ONE THIRD OF ALL OUR EMPLOYEES AT SABANCI ARE WOMEN BUT THIS IS NOT ENOUGH”
  • “SABANCI FOUNDATION AIMS TO IMPROVE THE HUMAN RIGHTS OF WOMEN IN TURKEY”

Sabanci Holding Chairman Güler Sabancı gave a speech at the opening plenary of the Leaders’ Summit of The United Nations Global Compact (UNGC) in New York. Following an opening address by the UN Secretary General Ban Ki-Moon, the panel witnessed Güler Sabancı talk about sustainability, women’s employment, and the Sabanci Group practices on these issues. Other speakers included Mathilde, Queen of the Belgians, former British Prime Minister Gordon Brown, and Nobel-prize winning economist Muhammad Yunus.

As a board member of the UNGC, Güler Sabancı noted the following during the opening plenary:

“My understanding of sustainability is simple: We must meet the requirements of the present without compromising the ability of future generations to meet their own requirements.

Sustainability keeps having a material impact on how companies think and act. The more people adopt the philosophy of corporate sustainability, the more opportunities they see in it. Leadership has to take full responsibility and communicate to all the stakeholders that sustainability is good for business. We must make sustainability a part of all our processes, including budgeting, long term planning, investment decisions.

-SUSTAINABILITY AT SABANCI-

130920 gs bm 2-1024x768Güler Sabancı also noted the various sustainability practices at Sabanci group of companies:

“In two of our cement plants, we carry out energy generation through waste heat recovery. %30 of the energy needs of those plants, approximately 30 MW, are generated this way. Through alternative fuel and raw material usage, we have replaced almost 20% of all our carbon fuels. Akcansa was the first industrial company in Turkey to apply to Voluntary Emission Trading. Similarly, it is the first and only company in Turkey to offer its stakeholders Corporate Governance assistance.

Last May, I opened our energy company, Enerjisa’s 143 megawatt wind farm on the Turkish western coast. This is Turkey’s largest renewable power plant to date. We already have two other wind farms with a combined installed capacity of 69 MW. Our plan is to operate 4,000 MW of renewable energy sources by 2020.

Over the past three years, Brisa has managed to reduce its carbon emissions by 26,000 tonnes, which equalled around 78,000 trees. By 2020, our carbon emissions will be 25% less than our emissions in 2005. Since 2009, the amount of waste generated by our factories has gone down by 59%, and by 2015 we are aiming for zero waste.”

-WOMEN’S EMPLOYMENT AT SABANCI-

Güler Sabancı also made note of women’s employment at Sabanci: “At Sabanci, around one third of our employees are women but this is not enough. Women at managerial positions are at 21%. In 2012, 22% of our women employees were promoted, but as of July 2013, that has increased to 34%. Last year we only had one female general manager, whereas right now, we have three. In 2012, 26% of our new recruits were women, whereas in the first quarter of 2013, that has increased to 35%.”

-SABANCI FOUNDATION-

Güler Sabancı noted the following about the Sabanci Foundation during her remarks: “At Sabanci Foundation, our aim is to improve the human rights of women in Turkey. Our “Joint Program to Promote and Protect Human Rights of Women and Girls” is a joint initiative between all UN institutions, the Turkish Ministry of the Interior, the Sabanci Foundation and Sabanci University.

IN Turkey, we have all the necessary laws to ensure women’s rights. What we are doing is to educate women and girls on these rights. We are also aiming to make sure society also understands and adopts these rights.”

The United Nations Joint Program for Promoting the Human Rights of Women is funded solely by the Sabanci Foundation and implemented in partnership with the Ministry of Interior, Ministry of Education, Ministry of Family and Social Policies, United Nations Development Program (UNDP), UN Women, Sabanci University and the Union of Municipalities of Turkey. Over four years, 3.420 participants from local governments and NGOs attended trainings on gender, gender based budgeting and gender policies.

In line with the UN Millennium Development Goals to promote gender equality, the Ministry of Interior issued a circular to instruct 81 provinces across Turkey to adopt the model developed by UNJP (Local Equality Action Plans development and creation of equality Commissions and Divisions) to promote the rights of women and girls at the local level. Sabanci Foundation Grant Program supported 34 projects in program cities reaching over 300.000 people, addressing the critical priority areas of Local Equality Action Plans. To date 2.144 teachers and other participants from Western and Eastern Turkey have attended seminars and 206 teachers have received Purple Certificates (certified by the Ministry of Education and considered in service training) after successful completion of a week-long training program at Sabanci University”.

ABOUT THE UNITED NATIONS GLOBAL COMPACT

  • Organised by the world's largest voluntary corporate sustainability initiative, this year’s Leaders’ Summit takes place on 19-20 September in New York.
  • Over 1200 people from all over the world have convened under this year’s slogan, “Architects for a Better World.”.
  • It is the largest Global Compact event this year..
  • Launched in 2000, the United Nations Global Compact is both a policy platform and a practical framework for companies that are committed to sustainability and responsible business practices.