By working together and growing together, we can achieve co-development of companies and countries, of economy and ecology, of communities and private enterprises, and of all our stakeholders.
The natural resources sector can truly accelerate a nation’s development agenda. The sector can boost manufacturing and build infrastructure in remote geographies, generate large-scale employment and significant revenue for nations globally. Vedanta stands committed to contributing to the growth story by advancing across the triple bottom line.
People: I am a strong advocate of Vedanta's philosophy of proactively engaging with the communities and operating through “free and informed consent”. It is the community's right to know all facets and probable outcomes of a project before granting it their consent. This also gives us the opportunity to share with the community the benefits that our business will usher in for them, walk them through a roadmap and set realistic expectations. It is important to protect the human rights of communities and our employees. Our people are our biggest assets. I come across a lot of potential during my interactions with the Vedanta team across the world. It is our responsibility to nurture this talent and provide growth opportunities to enable and empower them to become our future leaders. I give my personal assurance that fatalities will be eliminated and serious injury rates will be reduced drastically to be in line with our vision of zero harm. Understanding the causes of harm and prevention are my ongoing priorities.
Planet: The priority is not just to focus on zero harm but also to ensure zero discharge and zero waste. The approach to achieve this is by harnessing the potential of technology and innovation. Technological interventions and concentrated efforts have helped us surpass our water and energy targets. We are signatories to the Paris Pledge for Action, and are updating our carbon strategy and exploring innovative ways to reduce carbon emissions. As corporate citizens, we are committed to addressing the climate change challenge with the same vigour as we pursue economic and social development.
Prosperity: Sustainable development is a responsibility, to be resourced and focused on, in all economic conditions. While the markets may be weaker than we have seen in many years, our commitment remains unabated. We continue to make an important contribution to our communities through job creation, payment of taxes, creating access to resources and enabling strong linkages to other industries. We empower local communities and align our focus areas with the priority needs of nations, focusing on developing local economies and communities through partnerships with NGOs, local governments, academic institutions and private hospitals. I personally engage in promoting projects that benefit children and empower women. In Africa, our community development programmes include providing infrastructure such as schools and hospitals.
Our commitment to maintaining our “social licence to operate” goes beyond regulatory compliance and helps us to make targeted contributions to local communities while continuing to minimise our impact on air, water and land, and maintaining active dialogue with our stakeholders.
We are on the right path on this sustainability journey. The teams have worked diligently and I commend their efforts, which have placed Vedanta among the top 10 sustainable companies in India.
With the guidance of the Board Sustainability Committee, I am looking forward to further improving our occupational health and safety performance. Our goal is to achieve long-term alignment of interests between all stakeholders for the creation of long standing sustainable value.
We are committed to building a strong relationship with you and all our stakeholders because we, at Vedanta, firmly believe that the only way forward is together.