10 April, 2018

Communication on Engagement to the UN Global Compact and its ten Principles in the areas of Human Rights, Labour, Environment and Anti-Corruption

Find the full communciation here.

The European Telecommunications Network Operators’ Association (hereinafter ETNO) with this document submits its second Communication on Engagement with the UN Global Compact.


ETNO’s commitment to Sustainability and to Global Compact Principles

ETNO does not only represent the above however. The Ten Principles of the Global Compact are embedded in the way ETNO member companies operate worldwide, be they Global Compact participants or not.

ETNO has a long history of commitment to sustainability: the Association launched the voluntary Environmental Charter of European Telecom Operators in 1996. The Charter is made up of a set of commitments on environmental protection and responsible use of natural resources and is also a commitment to investigate the role of telecommunications in driving environmental sustainability. In 2004 – the year when ETNO joined the Global Compact - the scope of the Charter was broadened,  additional social commitments were included and it became ETNO’s Sustainability Charter. In 2012 the Association launched its Corporate Responsibility Charter,  reflecting most of the Ten Principles, and open for subscription to   ETNO members and non-members. In 2017 ETNO created a guidance document for all the members on SDG’s (see section 5).

ETNO member companies are convinced of the importance of decoupling economic growth from the use of natural resources and, in particular, of the need to reduce pollution, manage energy effectively and contribute to the global fight against climate change. They are convinced that high health and safety standards in the workplace, fair treatment, respect of human rights, proper work-life balance and the creation of opportunities for professional growth are basic pre-requisites that can enhance the well-being and productivity of their workforce. They aim to ensure that such principles be applied globally across the whole value chain.

ETNO was one of the founding members - and is still an active member - of the Global e-Sustainability Initiative (GeSI, www.gesi.org), having a seat on the Board of Directors. Created in 2001, GeSI is a strategic partnership which brings together international organisations and companies active in the ICT sector that are committed to creating and promoting technologies and practices that foster economic, environmental and social sustainability, while driving economic growth and productivity. Currently GeSI’s activities are particularly focused on enhancing and promoting the contribution of the ICT sector to reducing global GHG emissions - in line with the COP21 agreement, investigating ways and developing tools to guarantee and assess the respect of human rights across the ICT value chain, and developing methodologies and tools to assess ICT product and service sustainability.

Actions in support of the Global Compact

ETNO’s Working Groups (WGs) cover a broad range of topics directly relevant to the business of telecom operators. Among them, ETNO has its Sustainable Development Working Group, whose two primary objectives are to:

  • Drive and support the ETNO association, its members and various other supporting stakeholders to get maximum benefit from taking a pro‐active approach to the management of sustainability (environmentally, economically and ethically) and corporate responsibility issues, and
  • Share information, knowledge and best practices to ensure that ETNO member companies and other supporting companies are able to operate within an adequate, fair and justified legal framework as far as sustainability matters are concerned.

In addition to that, the Working Group supports the achievement of the UN Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) by raising awareness on the importance of digitalisation and its benefits for the achievement of the SDGs as well as on the mutual benefit for business and sustainability.

Among its 2018 objectives, the Working Group will investigate and highlight the links between the sustainable growth of the economy in the EU and the Digital Single Market, identifying, in particular, the areas where the potential offered by the use of ICTs can and should be exploited, and how. In this context the WG will also follow the activities of the multi-stakeholder platform on the implementation of the Sustainable Development Goals in the EU.

In the context of human rights, ETNO signed a collaboration with the Council of Europe on respecting human rights and the rule of law on the Internet. The objective is to build a new platform for dialogue between governments and the tech industry on respect for human rights and rule of law online. Of political importance is also the spread of democratic values and future of the Internet and its governance.

To continue with, ETNO member companies have a long record of commitment to environmental and sustainability standards.


Find the full communciation here.

© ETNO 2024
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