Thai bourse encourages increased CSR
The Stock Exchange of Thailand (SET), Thai Research Fund (TRF), Thaipat Institute, and Krungthep Turakij Newspaper co-hosted a seminar to promote Corporate Social Responsibility (CSR) on June 23, 2006. All SET-listed companies were invited to join the program, to consider the social and commercial importance of adopting a meaningful CSR program.
"CSR is an integral part of good corporate governance (CG)", SET's Capital Market Opportunity Center Chairman Ms. Sopawadee Lertmanaschai stated. As well as social responsibility, companies now need to concentrate more on ethical business practice. This year, CG center will draft a social and environmental policy to assist listed companies, and provide training and advice on CSR. Furthermore, this year's SET Awards will include a prize for the best CSR program.
"Socially concerned business is important in many ways. Genuine CSR builds relationships and reduces business risk. It increases confidence in the local capital market, especially among foreign investors who, these days, are more concerned about CG and CSR when making investment decisions," said Ms.Sopawadee.
Assistant Director of Thai Research Fund (TRF) Assoc. Prof.Suchata Chinajitr said many business organizations see a CSR program as an additional cost, and believe that it doesn't contribute to profitability. CSR is then dependent on the company's bottom-line. TRF provides scholarships to develop and research CSR, to enable businesses to integrate the concept into their management practice, and become committed to genuine CSR programs.
"Research on the relationship between such programs and organizational benefits demonstrates that efficient CSR design and realization benefits the company, both objectively and subjectively. Gains include higher market share, reduced operational costs, increased accessibility to funding, greater employee loyalty, a positive corporate image and brand acceptance. Thus, incorporating CSR programs into business practice assists an organization to not only outperform and excel, but also to achieve sustainable business growth," Ms.Suchata said.
Thaipat Institute Director Mr.Pipat Yodprudtikan declared that there is more to a CSR program than making donations to charity. Thaipat Institute, being concerned with sufficiency economy and corporate social responsibility, is keen to disseminate the concept of CSR.
"Promoting CSR in business entails thinking like children, performing like youngsters, and speaking like adults. It requires creativity, sincerity, determination and power. Internal and external communication must be clear and unambiguous, because only when staff and customers understand the concept, can the company benefit," Mr.Pipat said.
The guest speakers at the seminar were from the top management of Panasonic Electric Works (Thailand) PLC, Nestle (Thailand) PLC, and Amarin Printing & Publishing PLC. All these companies have completed phase 1 of Thaipat Institute's CSR program.
For more information regarding CSR program and CG, please contact SET's CG center on 0 2229 2603-4, or SET Call Center on 0 2229 2222.