Corporate Social Responsibility (CSR) is a concept whereby companies integrate social and environmental concerns in their business operations on a voluntary basis.
CSR as a management approach is increasingly important to enhance corporate's competitiveness as it helps businesses to regain trust and transform environmental, social and governance challenges into strategic opportunities, as well as better equipping firms to deal with crisis situations.
Through CSR, Business can voluntarily contribute to global, regional and national sustainable development agendas.GAFI aim to encourage CSR and responsible business behavior through mainly awareness-raising, best practice exchange, support better coordination for CSR activities.
The Investment law no. 72 of 2017 aimed for promoting a higher quality of domestic and foreign investment that contribute to sustainable development and abide by responsible business conduct.
The Investment law has for the first time introduced a chapter to support Social Responsibility of the Investor (Article 15), Article 15 stipulated:
- Stimulating CSR activity, whatever their size, purpose or legal form.
- Determining the areas of CSR: (environmental protection, health, social and cultural care or other areas of development, technical education, training and scientific research).
- Specifying the tax incentives for investors who dedicate a percentage of their annual profits to CSR projects.
- Creating a list of "Best Investment Projects" that conducted community development activities and declaring this list to the public.
- Prohibiting CSR projects, programs or services from using the social responsibility system to achieve political, partisan, or religious purposes or that involve discrimination among citizens.
-The Executive Regulations to the Investment law furtherly provided an elaboration to the implementation of the "Social Responsibility of the Investor" as it stipulated:
- Additional clarification on the areas of social responsibility of the investor (Chapter 2 Article 2).
- Investors shall provide GAFI with an annual report with the supporting documents about their community development activities. (Chapter 2 Article 3).
Out of it's Keenness to integrate the developmental efforts of the private sector with the government especially through corporate social responsibility activities to achieve sustainable development, GAFI introduced a "CSR Department" in 2019 where it's mission is to:
- Encouraging and developing social responsibility initiatives internally (GAFI) and externally (companies) in accordance with the GAFI's strategy and local and international standards in the field of sustainable development.
This to be achieved through working on:
-Raising awareness to the concepts of social responsibility and equal opportunities to achieve sustainable development.
-Encourage firms to adopt and implement social responsibility and sustainability practices.
-Monitoring and impact assessment of the conducted CSR activities.
- Issuing a list of the best leading companies in the field of social responsibility.
As GAFI recognizes the importance of improving women's conditions and integrating different social groups in line with the constitutional entitlements for women, children and people with special needs, Egypt's Vision 2030 and the UN goals, especially the fifth goal "gender equality" and the tenth goal "Reduced inequalities", The CSR Department comprised a new department for "Equal Opportunity" to work on removing obstacles and challenges that would abolish discrimination between employees either internally in GAFI or externally in companies. This would be achieved through internal initiatives and cooperation with various relevant authorities.
The CSR Department is currently holding an introductory seminar on social responsibility and equal opportunity on a monthly basis via the Internet through the Zoom application. To participate and attend the seminar, please register through the following link: https://forms.gle/Jrg5xGLwTSopdcvq8
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