PEZA to launch sustainability reporting

Catherine Talavera - The Philippine Star

MANILA, Philippines — The Philippine Economic Zone Authority (PEZA) is set to launch a sustainability reporting initiative this year as part of its earlier signed memorandum of understanding (MOU) with the Global Reporting Initiative (GRI).

In a statement, the PEZA said the goal of the sustainability reporting initiative is aimed at making sustainable actions and reporting.

“Voluntary compliance to the GRI’S Sustainability Action and Reporting and the UN SDGs can be a source of competitiveness for the country in attracting more FDIs and in enhancing regulatory compliance. Many advanced and developing economies subscribe to these principles to be able to measure the impact of FDIs on the host countries toward inclusive, resilient and sustainable development,” Panga said.

In March 2022, the PEZA forged an MOU with GRI for sustainability reporting.

Affiliated with the United Nations Environment Programme, GRI is an international independent standards organization that helps businesses, governments and other organizations understand and communicate their impacts on issues such as climate change, human rights and corruption.

PEZA’s MOU with the GRI was one of the topics discussed by PEZA OIC Tereso Panga during the recent Philippine-Switzerland 5th Joint Economic Commission (JEC) held in Bern, Switzerland on Jan. 12.

“This MOU aims to contribute to the acceleration and achievement of the Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) and the advancement of sustainability reporting in the Philippines especially within the ecosystem of export-oriented locators in PEZA,”Panga said.

“This partnership is delivered within the framework of the GRI’s Sustainability Reporting for Responsible Business program and is funded by the Switzerland State Secretariat for Economic Affairs (SECO),”he said.

Panga said among the objectives of the signed MOU are to raise awareness of sustainability and sustainability reporting among the export-oriented industry, and develop industry-specific sustainability reporting guidelines for the export-oriented industry; and build capacity of the export-oriented industry on how to communicate their impacts to the economy, environment, and society.

Other efforts of the PEZA in line with the GRI MOU include plans of issuing a PEZA memorandum circular regarding sustainable trade and investments guidelines for the compliance of locators and registered business enterprises.

As part of this effort, a roundtable discussion (RTD) will be conducted in the later part of the first quarter.

In addition, the PEZA and the GRI will establish a technical working group (TWG) composed of various locators and industries.

“As for the prospective TWG members that will be formed for the sustainability reporting, GRI has already provided PEZA a proposed list of chosen industry locators and partners. PEZA and GRI are also inviting the Department Trade and Industry (DTI) and the PhilExport to be one of our potential TWG members,”the PEZA said.

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