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New report highlights actions for Indian businesses to integrate sustainability in supply chains

The CII-ITC Centre of Excellence for Sustainable Development (CESD) launched the report, ‘Integrating Sustainability in Indian Supply Chains’ in collaboration with Sedex, this week, at the flagship event of CII’s 15th Sustainability Summit: Action Agenda for the Next Decade. The report demonstrates, through concrete evidence, the macro and micro-level challenges faced by Indian businesses in their pursuit to make supply chains responsible and sustainable.
Against the backdrop of black swan events like the COVID-19 pandemic and the visionary narrative of the 2030 Agenda for Sustainable Development, the assessment studies undertaken by Sedex and CESD examine key sustainability risks in India, which include informal working contracts, lack of health and safety measures, overtime, unfair wages, forced labour, water crisis, and waste and pollution.

Presenting the report, Mr Vishal Londhe, Head of Office – Sedex India said, “I am thrilled to share Sedex’s joint report with the CII-ITC Centre of Excellence for Sustainable Development. With India’s growing reputation as an industrial superpower, it is crucial that Indian businesses use their influence on supply chains to support improved working conditions and environmentally responsible sourcing practices. It is hugely encouraging to see a high level of interest in responsible sourcing among Indian business, and Sedex is proud to support Indian industry in achieving it.

Ms Seema Arora, Deputy Director General CII, expressed that “The CII-ITC Centre of Excellence for Sustainable Development is happy to partner with Sedex on this report. Through this we wish to bring to the fore the business case for investing in sustainable supply chains by analysing the key risks and challenges faced by Indian businesses in their supply chains and the drivers for action. The report also provides actionable guidance to companies on integrating sustainability in their supply chains. The guidance is based on the existing Indian legislation landscape and guidance around responsible business conduct, as well as international laws and legislation applicable to Indian companies as sourcing partners.

The report also highlights the wide-ranging scope for India for building export capacities, drawing focus on the nation’s role in global value chains as a favourable sourcing destination, through the Atma Nirbhar Abhiyan policy (Self-Reliant India).

As the world evolves from the pandemic, tighter regulations around social and environment disclosures in supply chains at international and local levels are expected to come up. This report is an attempt to support Indian companies in establishing clear management systems for sustainability, which involve leadership commitment and resource deployment along with other management controls. Access the report here.

For further information on the Summit agenda and key speakers, please visit:

CII-ITC Centre of Excellence for Sustainable Development
A pioneering effort by CII, CESD is on a mission to catalyse innovative ideas and solutions, in India, and globally, to enable business, and its stakeholders, in sustainable value creation. Its knowledge, action and recognition activities enable companies to be future-ready, improve footprint profiles, and advocate policymakers and legislators to improve standards of sustainable business through domestic and global policy interventions.

CESD leverages its role as an all-inclusive ecosystem player, partnering industry, government, and civil society. It has been a pioneer of environment management systems, biodiversity mapping, sustainability reporting, integrated reporting, and social and natural capital valuation in India, thus upgrading business in India to competitive levels of sustainability.

Sedex is a global membership organisation that helps companies to implement responsible business practices and policies in their business and supply chain to build responsible supply chains.

Sedex provides businesses with practical tools and resources to operate ethically, source responsibly and work with their suppliers to create fair working conditions for the people who make their products and services. Over 60,000 businesses use Sedex to manage business risk, meet compliance and drive positive impacts for people and the environment.