In 2008, the global financial
crisis cited by some as possibly the worst the world
has encountered since The Great Depression in 1929,
has had a devastating impact on the economies around
the world. By most counts, a recovery in 2009 seems
Many corporations have
reported weaker financial performance in 2008 and prospects
for 2009 remain uncertain. Thus, it becomes even more
challenging for corporations to not lose sight of their
Corporate Social Responsibility (CSR) commitments when
incorporating cost-cutting measures within the Company.
The on-going financial
and social impact will continue to unfold and what is
certain is that corporations and communities alike must
brace themselves and support each other during these
challenging times. The societies which do so will be
the ones that will emerge fundamentally stronger and
recover faster than the others.
We recognise that during
these difficult times, the larger community has pressing
needs and require our support more so than ever. CSR
is an integral part of our vision and mission and during
this economic recession, we remain steadfast in our
CSR efforts for the long-term sustainability of our
business. We are pleased to report that our CSR commitment
in 2008 has not wavered and we have no intention to
scale down on our efforts in 2009.
In fact, this crisis has
provided us with the challenge to stretch our resources
more creatively, so that our efforts will create a larger
and more positive CSR impact on our business and community.
CDL's CSR journey in 2008
has been industrious and there has been much development
not only within CDL but for the CSR movement in Singapore.
Reception to our first published dedicated report last
year has been very encouraging. We have received very
positive response from the media, investor and business
community and even the academia.
Beyond the report, we
have dedicated much effort to sharing our experience
at CSR-related conferences, seminars and events. It
is heartening to see that more corporations in Singapore
are taking a keen interest in CSR and placing greater
emphasis on the importance of CSR disclosure. We are
encouraged by the progress and we will continue to work
closely with non-governmental organisations such as
Singapore Compact for CSR to further promote the cause.
Recognisably, CDL is still
a novice in the practice of CSR. However, we are fully
committed to sustaining our efforts, elevating our standards
and practices and exploring innovative ways to reach
new levels of excellence in CSR.
Internally, we have also
formed our CSR Committee and taken greater steps to
review and structure CSR within the Company. This way,
we can better integrate CSR within the business processes,
enhance our current capabilities and facilitate the
planning of CSR initiatives and targets for sustainability.
To enable us to better understand our CSR position,
we held a workshop, bringing together all parts of our
business, to identify the key CSR risks and opportunities
that we face as a company. From this workshop, we have
set action plans to further minimise our CSR risks and
build on our opportunities. There has also been active
stakeholder engagement throughout the year in our continued
efforts to refine and develop our CSR programmes.
In our continuous pursuit
to improve our business performance and to better integrate
CSR into our business, we have also achieved the successful
incorporation of the ISO 14001 Environmental Management
System for Corporate Management and Operations covering
all HQ activities, such that all parts of our business
are now covered by ISO 14001. We have also gained Singapore
Quality Class certification that is based on an internationally-benchmarked
business excellence framework which encompasses seven
key areas of the business operations.
I am glad to report that
we have met many of our targets set for 2008. For instance,
our collective effort in energy conservation has led
to a 5% reduction in total energy use in 2008. In our
ever-evolving CSR journey, we are spurred to continue
refining our CSR programmes, methodology and measurements,
so that CDL can morph into an even better and more sustainable
company that is of value and a source of pride in the