70pc in UAE 'believe CSR helps firms grow'
Dubai, April 26, 2011
Seventy per cent of the respondents in UAE believed that CSR helps capture new markets and market share while 90 per cent said credible CSR programmes can enable companies to build a solid reputation, in a recent survey.
Over 80 percent thought that CSR (corporate social responsibility) can attract new customers and foster innovation, according to the second annual CSR Middle East Survey conducted by Sustainability Advisory Group (SAG).
There is a large increase in the number of firms which say that CSR is not just a government agenda, but an internal one, which will ensure the long term success of their business, said Maria Sillanpaa, founding director of SAG and speaker at the eighth CSR Summit that opened on April 24 at Moevenpick Hotel in Dubai.
“We are clearly witnessing a shift in attitudes towards CSR in the region. This maturing attitude is evident in businesses’ perception of the government’s role regarding CSR,” Sillanpaa added
PepsiCo, the official CSR sponsor, launched its first Youth CSR Forum as part of IIR Middle East CSR Summit.
The forum witnessed the participation of over 50 students from universities such as American University of Dubai, American University of Sharjah, Hult International Business School and Dubai Women’s College.
Students between 15 and 30 years old discussed and debated two key issues, ‘Sustaining the Environment’ and ‘Empowerment through Education’.
“We believe that CSR is to act in a responsible and sustainable manner; therefore, we are committed to the sustainable balancing of economic, ecological and social goals in our business,” said Memosh Khawaja, general manager of Henkel Arabia.
“CSR is an extension of Henkel's global strategy and we believe that sustainable development is essential in the Middle East and other emerging markets,” he added.
Key speakers at the CSR Summit which concludes on April 28 include Maxime Chaya, explorer and mountaineer from Lebanon and Khaled Khalifa, head of Middle East – Asia Bureau, UN IRIN News Service, Office for the Coordination of Humanitarian Affairs, UAE among others. – TradeArabia News Service