We have laid down important basic principles for our actions in six policies applicable throughout the Group. The text of these guidelines is publicly available. They provide our employees with guidance in the areas of value creation, sustainability, innovation, people, HSEQ, and compliance. The standards outlined in these policies are mandatory for all employees worldwide and form the framework for our activities. Where required, further detail is provided with more specific guidelines on particular topics.
Covestro’s primary objective is to turn its development activities and products into solutions that create value for customers, society, the environment, employees, and investors. We do this, for instance, by manufacturing products with superior properties, environmental performance, usability and cost effectiveness. At the same time, Covestro aims make the life cycle of products as resource-efficient as possible to extract the greatest possible value from the resources used in them.
We want to bring economic success into alignment with environmental and societal goals. Doing business sustainably conforms to Covestro’s purpose: “to make the world a brighter place”. In making decisions and taking actions, we therefore consider the three dimensions of sustainability – people, planet, profit – equally, while adhering to the principle of avoiding a negative impact on any of them. Our Sustainability Policy underscores this intention. Special committees at Covestro are tasked with defining and managing important sustainability topics, including the development and implementation of goals and action plans.
The SDGs are of great significance for Covestro and are therefore also reflected in our corporate strategy. For instance, we have made it our aim to systematically accelerate the alignment of our R&D project portfolio with the SDGs. This conviction is also expressed in our voluntary commitment to attaining the SDGs on our website (Corporate Commitment on our Contribution to the United Nations Sustainable Development Goals).
Innovation is an essential factor in mastering the challenges of a changing world, remaining competitive, and creating value for the long term – inspired by and consistent with sustainability. Accordingly, we continually work on developing new products, processes, applications, and technologies that offer new perspectives. It is particularly important to us that innovation be an issue of personal concern to each and every Covestro employee.
Covestro’s success is based on the outstanding skills and strong commitment of its employees. We therefore offer our employees a good and safe working environment and promote their professional and personal development. Covestro values a corporate culture that is curious, courageous, and colorful, and enables employees to successfully contribute their talents to the company. The core competencies and management skills that guide our employees’ further development are also oriented to these values.
Health, safety, environment, energy, and quality (HSEQ)
Health, safety, environment, energy, and quality are vitally important for achieving our goals. We set high standards and continually work toward improving our performance. This is the main objective of our integrated HSEQ management system, which ensures the implementation of the specifications in our HSEQ Group Regulation in orientation to or conformity with the internationally recognized standards ISO 45001, ISO 9001, ISO 14001, and ISO 50001.
Covestro’s corporate governance is characterized by a strong sense of responsibility as well as adherence to ethical principles. This includes strict compliance with all statutory requirements and Covestro’s voluntary commitments, which are anchored in our internal regulations and are applicable to all employees worldwide.
As a company committed to operating sustainably, we take a clear stand on relevant issues. Like our guidelines, the text of these corporate commitments is publicly available. The minimum standards applicable to such efforts are stipulated in our voluntary corporate commitments. Compliance with them is governed by the corresponding directives, which are valid throughout the Group. At present, Covestro has entered into voluntary commitments on the following: the UN Sustainable Development Goals, the Ten Principles of the UN Global Compact, Responsible Care™, human rights, slavery and human trafficking (UK Modern Slavery Act Statement), water, product responsibility, corporate compliance, responsible lobbying, responsible marketing and sales, and tax transparency. In terms of lobbying in particular, we have laid down clear and binding rules for our engagement in the political arena. The voluntary commitment and a more comprehensive directive are applicable Group-wide and build on transparency and openness in the interaction with representatives of political institutions. In addition, Covestro has voluntarily joined the European transparency register in addition to publicly publishing its voluntary commitment. Covestro does not make any donations as a company to political parties, politicians, or candidates for a political office. The associations in which Covestro is a member make donations under their own responsibility and according to the respective relevant legislation, in particular taking account of laws related to donations to political parties.