On June 13, Barrick joined leading Canadian companies and organizations in Toronto for a day-long event to inaugurate the United Nations Global Compact (UNGC) network in Canada. The event was attended by 100 executives of UNGC companies, and representatives from the United Nations, the Government of Canada and civil society organizations, and explored how the Canadian Local Network can advance the Global Compact’s universal principles.
Barrick helped to establish and launch the Canadian network and ranks among its seven founding member companies. The company is represented on the group’s steering committee by Vice President and Deputy General Counsel Jonathan Drimmer.
“Barrick is proud to be part of this new network of like-minded Canadian companies committed to advancing the UN’s development goals,” says Drimmer, who was a panelist at the launch. “We look forward to working with other Canadian network members to share ideas, create best practices and increase ethical conduct to support a more sustainable global economy.”
The launch of the network reflects increased recognition of the importance of environmental and social responsibility by businesses operating domestically in Canada and throughout the world. Members of the new Canadian network will begin by developing the group’s focus priorities. The UN Global Compact is an organization of localized networks of public and private organizations that advance the Global Compact’s ten principles on human rights, labor, environmental and anti-corruption issues, and promotes the UN’s broad development objectives.
The event featured the signing of a Memorandum of Understanding by current Global Compact participants in Canada, represented by Helle Bank Jorgensen, Special Advisor to the Global Compact Office, and the nominated representative of the Global Compact Network Canada. The memorandum provides for the formal establishment of the Local Network of the Global Compact in Canada.
“With the rise in global trade, the increased significance and complexity of global value chains, and growing calls for responsible business from investors, civil society and other stakeholders, Canadian companies see the need to collaborate, learn from each other and take action to advance corporate citizenship,” said Jorgensen.
Other founding members of network include Scotiabank, Suncor Energy Inc., Globescan Inc. and Teck Resources Limited. Also present were representatives from major global reporting frameworks such as Global Reporting Initiative (GRI), Sustainalytics, International Integrated Reporting Council (IIRC) and Carbon Disclosure Project (CDP), on account of increased demand for communications on results of corporate sustainability. Voluntary membership in the network provides companies with a forum across different sectors to discuss strategies and best practices, and potentially create public-private partnerships that will benefit their stakeholders.
The UNGC was launched in 2000 as a policy platform and a practical framework for responsible and sustainable business practices. Barrick has been a signatory of the UNGC since 2005 and has committed to aligning its policies with the Global Compact’s ten principles, including Barrick’s Supplier Code of Ethics. The company also provides reports about global measures taken to support the ten principles through an annual Communication on Progress.