ASEAN CSR Network: June 2018 Newsletter

Promoting and enabling
responsible business conduct in ASEAN

​ASEAN Responsible Business Forum
(27-28 Aug 2018, Singapore)

Save the date and join us at the ASEAN Responsible Business Forum (ARBF). Together we will discover how companies can collectively advance and mainstream responsible and inclusive business across the three pillars of ASEAN, furthering efforts of ASEAN towards building a united, inclusive, people-centred, people-oriented, resilient and sustainable community.
Key topics to be discussed include human rights due diligence in the supply chains; business integrity and anti-corruption; financial inclusion; micro, small and medium-sized enterprises (MSMEs) development; climate change and environmental sustainability.


Visit ARBF website for more details here.


ACN works with ILO to promote decent work in ASEAN

ACN's CEO Mr Thomas Thomas (middle) met with ILO's Director General Mr Guy Ryder (right) on 13 June 2018 in Singapore to discuss the promotion of the Decent Work agenda in the region and on safe migration of labour

ACN is a Founding Member of the ILO Global Business Network on Forced Labour and Human Trafficking, a collaborative forum convened by the ILO for companies, employer organisations, and business networks to come together with the ultimate aim of leveraging comparative advantages and collective action towards the elimination of forced labour and human trafficking.


Read more here.


Stakeholders gathered to discuss challenges and solutions in addressing MSME financial gap


How can we address the missing middle financing gap for micro, small and medium-size enterprises (MSMEs)? ACN convened a Roundtable on Financial Inclusion for MSMEs in ASEAN on 27 June 2018 in Singapore to discuss this key finding of a report conducted with ASEAN Business Advisory Council, Oxfam and AVPN.


Read more here.​


Financial inclusion of MSMEs was also the topic for June's webinar


Our webinar participants highlighted access to finance as the biggest barrier to MSMEs in their sector/country.


Read more here.​


ACN calls on businesses to respect and support children's rights


The ideas and the characters to the obligation of safeguarding children’s rights are universally accepted. Children’s rights are human rights. They have the right to life, right to education, right to food, right to health, right to water, right to identity, right to freedom, and right to protection and others. However, there is still a huge gap between expectations and reality. As we celebrates the World Day Against Child Labour (12 June), ACN calls on stakeholders, especially businesses, to play their part in respecting and supporting human rights, including children’s rights.


Read more here.

With support from ACN, more than 100 participants from the region gathered at the ASEAN Intergovernmental Commission on Human Rights Interregional Dialogue on 4-6 June 2018 in Bangkok to share best practices on business and human rights, covering issues ranging from progress made on National Action Plans on Business and Human Rights in ASEAN, to the role of financial institutions in human rights.

Read more here.


ACN and its project partner, AVPN, shared the findings of a recent piece of research about MSMEs in ASEAN, covering the level of support available to them with regards to access to finance, technical support and an enabling environment. The findings were presented to participants at the breakout session on Financing the Missing Middle in Southeast Asia of the AVPN Conference 2018 on 6 June 2018, making up mainly of impact investors and social entrepreneurs.

Read more here.


ACN also supported the ASEAN Corporate Responsibility and Sustainability Summit 2018 where ACN CEO Thomas Thomas shared about CSR best practices and lessons to be learned. 

Read more here.

Module 2 of the ASEAN CSR Fellowship 2018 convenes on 2-6 July 2018, in Ho Chi Minh City, Viet Nam. The Fellows will learn about Vietnam’s business integrity and anti-corruption initiatives, and explore human rights and labour issues in migration. Module 2 will also introduce to the Fellows the concept of sustainable development and deep dive into the fourth industrial revolution and its impact on responsible business. The Fellows will go through a series of trainings, including but not limited to ethical recruitment, and cost and benefit analysis of responsible business.

This Fellowship is made possible with support from the Government of Sweden through its Embassy in Bangkok, United Kingdom Foreign and Commonwealth Office, Singapore National Youth Council, and  Vietnam Chamber of Commerce and Industry.

The programme booklet is available here.
View the list of fellows here.
For more information about the ASEAN CSR Fellowship, click here.

Global Compact Network Singapore successfully organised the 2018 Sustainable Solutions Expo (SSE) on 5-6 June 2018.

Learn more about the SSE

19-20 July 2018
17th LCF CSR Expo 2018 Conference


Leaders from ASEAN National Disaster Management Organisations discussed, among others, about setting priorities for women in disaster management during the 32nd Meeting of the ASEAN Committee on Disaster Management (ACDM) held on 26-28 June 2018 in Kuala Lumpur. Considering that women were disproportionately affected both during and after disasters, and with a view to creating a more resilient ASEAN and ensuring the whole communities approach in disaster risk reduction, the ACDM acknowledged the important component of women inclusiveness in disaster response planning and management. The meeting also agreed to pursue new initiatives on women, peace and security and strengthening efforts in promoting gender mainstreaming on disaster risk reduction and climate change adaptation.

Read more from ASEAN Secretariat here.

Indonesia, one of the world’s biggest greenhouse gas emitters, is turning to green finance markets to fund new development projects it promises will be both environmentally and socially friendly.

Read more from Eco-Business here.

The Myanmar Rice Federation, the country’s leading business group for rice is pushing the parliament to legislate a new law to regulate the sector. The draft rice law is set to support the development of the supply chain of rice and paddy, as well as to strengthen the production and trade, and to encourage public-private partnerships, allowing better collaboration between the government and the private sector.

Read more at The Myanmar Times here.


Women board directors have positive impact on financial performance of companies, a National University of Singapore (NUS) Business School study has found. Using econometric techniques, this is the first study in Singapore to establish a relationship between board gender diversity and company’s financial performance, acting through corporate governance.

Read more from NUS here.​​


The United Nations Global Compact launched the newly formed Sustainable Ocean Business Action Platform — a three-year global programme bringing together business, civil society, the UN and Governments to advance the ocean economy and sustainable development.

Read more from UNGC here.

KnowTheChain ranks 40 global technology companies on action taken to address forced labour in their supply chains. Intel, HP, Apple, and Hewlett Packard Enterprise are leading in an industry where more action is needed to protect vulnerable workers.

Read more from KnowTheChain here.

China could slash its climate-changing emissions by 30% if all its cities cleaned up pollution from their dirtiest power plants and factories. The world's biggest emitter of greenhouse gases needs to focus on its urban areas in order to meet national-level targets under the international Paris Agreement to curb global warming, according to scientists at the University of East Anglia (UEA).

Read more from Thomson Reuters Foundation here.

​​From UN Global Compact (UNGC):
Interactive Map for Business of Anti-Human Trafficking Organisations


From Thomson Reuters Foundation:

From Malaysia to Myanmar, social ventures build homes and safe spaces

By Rina Chandran

From World Economic Forum (WEF):

The Roadmap to Financing Deforestation-Free Commodities


From Eco-Business:

Microplastics: Small plastics, big problem

By Paul Stephenson
Participating Organisations
Indonesia - Indonesia Business Links
Myanmar - Union of Myanmar Federation of Chambers of Commerce and Industry

If your country does not have a Participating Organisation formalised as a convenor yet, you may contact the Secretariat of the ASEAN CSR Network directly.

ASEAN CSR Network is a company limited by guarantee in Singapore, with charity status as an International Charitable Organisation (ICO) and is an ASEAN accredited Entity.

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