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Case study: How APSEZ improves the quality of life in local communities

As India’s largest private sector port developer and operator company, with its ports located at strategic locations across the Indian coastline, APSEZ (Adani Ports and Special Economic Zone Limited) seeks to build a responsible business and works alongside its CSR partner, the Adani Foundation, to foster inclusive growth through education, community health, sustainable livelihood and rural infrastructure development.

This case study is based on the 2016-17 Sustainability Report by APSEZ published on the Global Reporting Initiative Sustainability Disclosure Database that can be found at this link. Through all case studies we aim to demonstrate what CSR/ ESG/ sustainability reporting done responsibly means. Essentially, it means: a) identifying a company’s most important impacts on the environment, economy and society, and b) measuring, managing and changing.

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Abstract

Besides playing a major role in facilitating both national and international maritime trade, APSEZ is driven by its vision to improve the quality of life of local communities  Tweet This!, fulfilling a broader objective of inclusive development. In order to improve the quality of life in local communities APSEZ took action to:

  • impart knowledge
  • promote community health
  • support sustainable livelihoods
  • promote infrastructure development

What are the material issues the company has identified?

In its 2016-17 Sustainability Report APSEZ identified a range of material issues, such as effluents and waste, compliance, economic performance, occupational health and safety, procurement practices. Among these, improving the quality of life in local communities stands out as a key material issue for APSEZ.

Stakeholder engagement in accordance with the GRI Standards              

The Global Reporting Initiative (GRI) defines the Principle of Stakeholder Inclusiveness when identifying material issues (or a company’s most important impacts) as follows:

“The reporting organization shall identify its stakeholders, and explain how it has responded to their reasonable expectations and interests.”

Stakeholders must be consulted in the process of identifying a company’s most important impacts and their reasonable expectations and interests must be taken into account. This is an important cornerstone for CSR / sustainability reporting done responsibly.

Key stakeholder groups APSEZ engages with:  

Stakeholder Group                Method of engagement
Customers ·      Personal Interviews
Suppliers/Vendors

 

·      Vendor meet

·      Group Discussions

·      Vendor Audits

Employees

 

·      Online Surveys

·      Group Discussions

·      Individual performance appraisals

Local communities ·      Group Discussion
Investors/Shareholders ·      Online Surveys by third party

·      Annual General Meeting

How stakeholder engagement was made to identify material issues

To identify and prioritise material topics based on stakeholders’ concerns APSEZ combined different methods to derive maximum information, such as online sustainability questionnaires and focus group discussions.

What actions were taken by APSEZ to improve the quality of life in local communities?

In its 2016-17 Sustainability Report APSEZ reports that it took the following actions for improving the quality of life in local communities:

  • Imparting knowledge
  • Adani Vidya Mandir (AVM) Ahmedabad and Bhadreshwar provide “Free of cost” quality education to young people from weaker economic backgrounds. Currently, AVM, Bhadreshwar empowers 395 students with primary education, of whom 137 belong to fisher-folk communities. Adani Public School in Mundra, established in 2001, now caters to 1480 students from nursery to 12th standard. The school is equipped with Smart classes, sports ground and other amenities necessary for students’ overall development. In addition, DPCL DAV Public School, Dhamra, supported by Adani Foundation, provides quality English medium education at a subsidised cost to students from the periphery villages. The Foundation has also initiated and implemented several educational programmes aiming at improving quality of education in the government schools.
  • Promoting community health
  • In its effort to provide affordable and accessible health care to all, Adani Foundation has established rural clinics in its functional areas. Mobile Healthcare Units (MHCU) have been used to cater to the health needs of the remote rural areas. So far, MHCUs have treated approximately 70,000 patients at Mundra, Dahej and Dhamra ports. Additionally, the Foundation has facilitated awareness campaigns, medical support, primary health care and financial assistance benefitting un-privileged patients in Mundra, Dahej, Dhamra and Hazira. The Foundation has also provided senior citizens with a Senior Citizen Health Card, focusing on the rural senior citizens, to support them with necessary health based assistance. Currently, the Senior Citizen Health Card scheme is spread across 66 villages in Kutch district, with a total of 7487 senior citizens. In Dahej, the Foundation conducts Hygiene and Sanitation awareness drives with School & Aanganwadi Children and Adolescent girls. These campaigns directly benefited over 4000 students from 11 schools and 13 Aanganwadi, who will take these messages to their families and communities.
  • Supporting sustainable livelihoods
  • Through the Adani Foundation and the Adani Skill Development Centre (ASDC), APSEZ builds capacities of the people in the community. The various training programmes are designed according to the needs of each group in the society, including women-folk, youth, and others. In 2016-17, ASDC trained 2986 candidates, of whom 578 were women. Most of the trainees trained at ASDC, secured jobs in various organisations. Fisher-folks were provided with employment during non-fishing months, through trainings on mangrove plantations and avenues of painting works, to generate alternate sources of income. A total of 3375 and 5068 man-days of employment, in mangrove plantations and painting works respectively, were provided
to the community members. In addition, 2285 fishermen benefited through various welfare and support programmes implemented by the Foundation. APSEZ, through the Adani Foundation, also supported Self-Help Groups (SHGs) to empower women in rural areas.
  • Promoting infrastructure development
  • Based on the needs of the community, APSEZ designs, plans and builds various village development activities for the betterment of education, community health & sanitation, water conservation, and for improving living standards. During the reporting period, an amount of Rs. 14.24 crores out of the total CSR expenditure was spent on Rural Infrastructure Development. APSEZ’s initiatives included the construction of Individual household toilets and safe drinking water facilities, both built for the benefit of the community. Additionally, during the reporting period 140 shelters were refurbished and a road measuring 2300 meters was developed at Juna Bandar.

Which GRI Standards and corresponding Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) have been addressed?

The GRI Standard addressed in this case is: Disclosure 413-1 Operations with local community engagement, impact assessments, and development programs

 

Disclosure 413-1 Operations with local community engagement, impact assessments, and development programs does not correspond to any SDG.

 

80% of the world’s 250 largest companies report in accordance with the GRI Standards

SustainCase was primarily created to demonstrate, through case studies, the importance of dealing with a company’s most important impacts in a structured way, with use of the GRI Standards. To show how today’s best-run companies are achieving economic, social and environmental success – and how you can too.

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References:

1) This case study is based on published information by APSEZ, located at the link below. For the sake of readability, we did not use brackets or ellipses. However, we made sure that the extra or missing words did not change the report’s meaning. If you would like to quote these written sources from the original, please revert to the original on the Global Reporting Initiative’s Sustainability Disclosure Database at the link:

http://database.globalreporting.org/

2) https://www.globalreporting.org/standards/gri-standards-download-center/

Note to APSEZ: With each case study we send out an email requesting a comment on this case study. If you have not received such an email please contact us.

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