The UNGC is a voluntary business initiative in which signatories commit to aligning their operations and strategies with 10 human rights, labour, environment and anti-corruption principles. There are more than 8700 signatories around the world.
In its report, the bank outlined a number of actions and policies that it had undertaken in the past year. In the area of human rights, ANZ has established “Respecting people and communities: ANZ’s approach to human rights”, a guide that was rolled out in October 2010 to ANZ employees in four languages – English, Indonesian Bahasa, Vietnamese and Chinese for staff based in Hong Kong and Taiwan. The bank reported that they have also installed systems to identify and manage human rights impacts. ANZ’s Reputation Risk Committee plays a role in enabling fast and effective identification and remediation of any human rights issues in business dealings.
Over the next year, the bank will embed the standards into everyday business by providing key employees with training, and will work with stakeholders to encourage support for the approach and incorporate them into the banks’ business practices.
In terms of managing environmental exposures, the bank has developed an environmental management system giving a structured approach for assessing how the bank’s operations impact on the environment and sets targets to improve performance. ANZ bank has been certified carbon neutral by Low Carbon Australia.
The bank also outlined progress and future actions on labour, pointing to materials within the human rights policy and commitments to “ensure fair and safe working conditions, eliminate discrimination and harassment, improve employee engagement, promote freedom of association, and eliminate all forms of child, forced or compulsory labour.” ANZ engages with stakeholders including employees to provide understanding of material issues and informs the development of corporate responsibility targets, the report said.
In the area of anti-corruption, the bank stated: “Our Global Anti-Bribery policy is based on Australian and international legislation and best practice, including the Transparency International & Social Accountability International ‘Business principles for countering bribery’. The bank also pointed to its “Code of Conduct and Ethics and supporting policies, such as our Anti-Bribery Policy and our Global Fraud and Corruption Policy provide a framework for managing corruption and bribery.”