ASEAN CSR Network: November 2018 Newsletter

Promoting and enabling
responsible business conduct in ASEAN

Message from CEO

Dear Partners and Friends,

We wish to thank you for the support you had given to ASEAN CSR Network (ACN) over the years. We were established in December 2010 to realise the vision of promoting corporate social responsibility (CSR) to achieve sustainable socio-economic development for the benefit of the people of ASEAN.

In 2014, we launched the ASEAN CSR Vison 2020 to “promote and enable responsible business conduct in ASEAN to achieve sustainable, equitable and inclusive social, environmental and economic development”.  

We thank you for the support and encouragement you gave ACN. Thanks to that support, we managed to do much to move the agenda in ASEAN. We are an ASEAN Entity and the appointed responsible and inclusive business sector champion with the ASEAN Business Advisory Council (ABAC). 

We had worked with partners, especially with the ASEAN Secretariat and ASEAN Bodies, to move the responsible business agenda. This included the ASEAN Guidelines for CSR on Labour, regional strategy for CSR and Human Rights with AICHR and inputs to sectoral bodies on rural development and poverty eradication, social welfare and development, labour and others. Our collective action on business integrity with research on sustainability reporting disclosure, business integrity, and business and human rights allowed us and other stakeholders to make informed decisions.

Unfortunately, we suffered a setback. We lost funding support from some funders. This setback affects the financial viability of our organisation, which is being addressed. We are implementing cost cutting measures by trimming our office staff and implementing new work arrangements. We are continuing with activities with our member organisations that generates revenue. This includes capacity building and the Fellowship programme.

Also, in August 2018, we, together with ABAC recommended to the ASEAN Economic Ministers to support responsible and inclusive business. We are working on moving these recommendations forward by creating a network of responsible and inclusive businesses with ABAC.

We will continue to keep you posted on developments and look forward to your continued support. Please do contact me or any of our Trustees with your ideas and offers to support us.  

I do hope you will continue with your support as we do our best to overcome the present situation.

Thanks and regards,

For and on behalf of the Board of Trustees
Thomas Thomas
Copied to Board of Trustees
Chair: Ms Yanti Triwadiantini - Indonesia - 
Deputy Chair: Ms Pensri Suteerasarn - Thailand - 
Ms Elaine Tan - ASEAN Foundation - 
Ms Helen O Orande - Philippines - 
Ms Tengku Ida Tengku Ismail - Malaysia - 
Mr Nguyen Quang Vinh - Vietnam -
Ms Khine Khine New - Myanmar - 
Mr Wilson Ang - Singapore -


Launch of Study:
Sustainability Reporting in ASEAN and Singapore

ACN launched two joint studies with the Centre for Governance, Institutions and Organisations (CGIO), National University of Singapore (NUS) Business School through a forum, Sustainability Reporting in ASEAN and Singapore: Opportunities in an Era of Tension, which was held on 22 November 2018 in Singapore. 

ACN CEO, Mr Thomas Thomas, first gave a welcome remark and then moderated a panel discussion.


Read more on the launch and download the reports here.


ACN promotes business ethics and integrity

ACN, in partnership with the Federation of Malaysian Manufacturers (FMM) and the International Chamber of Commerce (ICC) Malaysia, jointly organised a one-day seminar on business ethics and integrity. The theme of this year's seminar was Business Ethics a Foundation to Growth. It was held on 8 November 2018 in Petaling Jaya, Malaysia.

The seminar featured a keynote address, delivered by YBhg Tan Sri Abu Kassim bin Mohamed, Director General, National Centre for Governance, Integrity and Anti-Corruption (GIACC), as well as a high-level dialogue on Business Value of Ethics, Integrity and Governance, special lectures and a panel discussion.

ACN CEO, Mr Thomas Thomas, was present to deliver the closing remarks. 


ACN organised a study visit for members of the Thai Listed Companies Association

ACN, together with the CSR Club of the Thai Listed Companies Association (TLCA) formed by the Stock Exchange of Thailand (SET), organised a study visit to Singapore called Experience Sharing: Singapore’s Sustainability Journey. The visit was from 21 to 23 Nov 2018, and was attended by members of TLCA. The programme is aimed at creating a learning environment through private sector sharing on how they address key sustainability issues in Singapore, in areas such as diversity and inclusive practices, environmental protection and urban planning, as well as sustainability reporting.

To find out how you can get involved in such visits,
get in touch with us.


The Voice of Business in ASEAN

The Voice of Business in ASEAN is a pilot study on perceptions of responsible and inclusive business in ASEAN. This inaugural survey of business sentiment was conducted by the ASEAN Business Advisory Council (ASEAN-BAC), in partnership with the Organisation for Economic Co-operation and Development (OECD) and ASEAN CSR Network (ACN) to give a greater voice to the private sector in the articulation of policies. The objective of this initiative is to assist and empower ASEAN companies – particularly those that are micro, small and medium sized – to play a greater role in the formulation of policies across ASEAN, in order to ensure that these policies hit their targets and truly contribute to private sector development in ASEAN in a cost-effective way.

The report was launched at the ASEAN Business and Investment Summit (ABIS) 2018, held from 12-13 November 2018, at Marina Bay Sands, Singapore.


Download the report here.


ACN is pleased to bring you this new regular column where participants of the ASEAN CSR Fellowship share their thoughts, reflections, insights and lessons learnt about responsible business. 

EIA - Enforcement, Inculcation, Attitude
By Maria De Souza, Stakeholder Relations Executive, Petronas, Malaysia

CSR & Sustainability: Beyond Purpose
By Hazel Quek, Corporate Responsibility Executive, Hilton, Singapore
Learn more about the ASEAN CSR Fellowship Programme 2018 here.

From Channel NewsAsia:
Multilateral cooperation ‘now more urgent than ever’ for ASEAN, says PM Lee
By Tang See Kit

From The Sunday Times:

Getting more firms to do well by doing good
By Sue-Ann Tan

From The Interpreter:
​By Melissa Crouch

From International Council on Mining & Metals (ICMM):

ICMM is first industry body to commit to UN Guiding Principles on Business and Human Rights as a condition of membership

From The Diplomat:
Thailand's ASEAN Chair Challenge in 2019
By Prashanth Parameswaran
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.

​Our mailing address is:
10 Hoe Chiang Road, #08-03 Keppel Towers
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