Presentation of the Greek Sustainability Code, 7th April 2016
The Greek Sustainability Code, an essential tool for enhancing the competitiveness and openness of the Greek market!
In the context of the conference for its official presentation, the Greek Sustainability Code has been widely accepted by the representatives of the Economical Society, the Greek State, the European Institutions and the Civil Society. With the principal message that the Greek Sustainability Code is a practical tool for promoting the transformation and adaptation of the Greek economy on the basis of Sustainable Development by enhancing the transparency, the self-assessment, the accountability as well as the comparative advantage of the Greek companies of every sector and size, the Conference for its official presentation, which took place on Thursday the 7th of April at the Mela Hall of the National Bank, has been successfully concluded with wide participation of representatives from the Greek State, the Business Society, the European Institutions and the Civil Society.
It was underlined that the Greek Sustainability Code has been developed by QualityNet Foundation in cooperation with the German Council for Sustainable Development (RNE) in the context of Sustainable Greece 2020 Initiative and it is the result of fruitful dialogue and open consultation process to which representatives of 2 leading institutional organizations, of 33 business bodies, 47 social actors and of 120 companies participated.
As it was presented in the context of the Conference, the Greek Sustainability Code is based on the principle one code for all addressing not only to the companies the European Directive on non-financial information disclosure involves but also to all those companies aiming at developing comparative advantage in terms of their exports, their positive evaluation from the financial analysts for attraction of investments and the enhancement of their creditworthiness as well as their inclusion in international networks of Responsible Suppliers. The Code constitutes of 4 pillars with 20 criteria addressing to all companies that have developed management systems and aim to include Sustainable Development and Corporate Responsibility in their operations. Every company can participate in the Greek Sustainability Code on different levels of implementation depending on the maturity of its internal procedures. The Greek Sustainability Code is offered for FREE to all institutional bodies of the country and to the companies that are interested in developing an operational framework based on the Sustainable Development and Corporate Responsibility principles. It is worth noting that participation in the Greek Sustainability Code offers the option for the participating companies to be linked to the European Sustainability Platform promoting Greek entrepreneurship on European level.
As keynote speaker, Ms. Louka Katseli, Chair of the Board, National Bank of Greece and President of Hellenic Bank Association (EET) noted the fact that the Sustainability Code places Sustainable Development in the core of corporate operation and management and highlighted the fact that the incorporation of the Code in the banking sector leads to the internal upgrading and improvement of the organization of the Banking Institutions. She particularly emphasized that “The Code upgrades the level of risk management by incorporating environmental criteria to the value chain of the banking services while, through the transparency procedures it provides for, it ameliorates the image of the banks in the international investment environment”. Concluding, Ms. Katseli stressed the fact that the Sustainability Code is a powerful tool for the reinforcement of the banks’ competitiveness and their contribution to the sustainable development our country is in need for.
Mr. Leonidas Fragiadakis, CEO, National Bank of Greece Group elaborated on how the Greek Sustainability Code can support the openness and competitiveness of the Greek Companies as well as how the National Bank will include the Greek Code in its creditworthiness process.
The European Sustainability Code as a tool of transparency and competitiveness was presented by Prof. Dr. Guenther Bachmann, Secretary General of the German Council for Sustainable Development (RNE) who primarily expressed his admiration for and satisfaction with the fact that the Greek Sustainability Code is the first national adaptation of the European Code with innovative elements adjusting it effectively to the needs of Greek reality. Mr. Bachmann referred extensively to the European Sustainability Code and to the importance attributed to it given the current transitional period, emphasizing the fact that the Code is an answer-proposal not only for the present but for the future paving the way for adaptation to the new holistic model of Sustainable Development.
Eventually, Mr. Efthimios Vidalis, President of the Council of Sustainable Development and General Secretary, Hellenic Federation of Enterprises (SEV) took the floor. Mr. Vidalis pointed out that the Sustainability Code promotes the new corporate model of Sustainable Development to the small-medium sized enterprises too, rendering them more attractive to investors and consumers in the context of modern competitive environment. He concluded stressing the fact that SEV is very content with the completion of the Code and will support its adoption on voluntary basis.
The expert team of the QualityNet Foundation will be at the disposal of and support anyone interested in participating in the Greek Sustainability Code.
More information at 210/6891524 and at the following link www.greekcode.sustainablegreece2020.com.