The local chapters of Global Compact Network India are an integral part of the network’s strategy of decentralizing its system of governance and increasing its outreach to companies and organizations across the country. On 27th February 2015, GCNI launched it 6th Local chapter in Pune. The chapter was launched by Mr. Parag Satpute, Country Manager, Sandvik Asia Private Limited in the presence of Ms. Beroz Rumie Gazdar, Vice-President (Western Region), GCNI and Sr. Vice president of Group Sustainability, Mahindra & Mahindra, Ms. Christina Båge-Friborg, Head of Sustainble Business, Sandvik AB, and Mr. Pooran Chandra Pandey, Executive Director, GCNI.
The event began with a welcome address by Ms. Vaishali Surve, Regional Compliance Manager in Sandvik Asia. Ms. Beroz Rumie Gazdar, Vice-President (Western Region), GCNI and Sr. Vice President-Group Sustainability, Mahindra & Mahindra, set the tone for the launch and stated how the business landscape was rapidly changing, and if change is the new constant businesses need to adapt to the emerging challenges.
Providing further context for the launch, Mr. Pooran Chandra Pandey, Executive Director, GCNI, emphasized how good internal and external business practices and multi-stakeholder collaboration are an important part of meeting the challenges that businesses face. He also added that India is increasingly being looked as a leader around the world.
Ms. Christina Båge-Friborg, Head of Sustainable Business, Sandvik AB, in her keynote address provided a historical background of Sandvik and its approach to sustainability. She stated that sustainability is embedded in the vision of Sandvik to “set the industry standard”, as well as their core values and strategy. Sustainable business has to be based on the triple bottom line; the company must respect the three pillars of sustainability. She expressed that the Sustainable Development goals demonstrated a closer relationship between the development community and the corporate world, and would be more relevant for businesses.
The key note address was followed by a panel discussion, titled “Collaborate or compete? Which is the better way?” Ms. Sara Larsson, General Manager of Swedish Chamber of Commerce India, moderated the discussion, which included Ms. Beroz Gazdar, Dr. (Mrs.) Joy Deshmukh, Member- Governing Council, GCNI and Global CSR Head, Tata Consultancy Services, Mr. Naresh Kumar Pinisetti, President – Human Resources, Deepak Fertilisers and Petrochemicals Corporation Limited and Mr. Anand Mahajani, Head of Corporate Sustainability, L&T Infotech Limited as panelists. The panel discussed on how sustainability in the Indian context is usually viewed from a short-term perspective and gave practical examples of how adopting a sustainability agenda can make business sense in terms of profit and growth from a company perspective. The panelists also felt that collaboration is beneficial when solving the complex sustainability issues defined by the panel and the speakers.
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