Activity Report 2018

Respect for Human Rights

Being aware of our role as a member of the international community, we work to understand the culture, traditions, and practices of each country and region in which we operate. We are working to ensure there is no discrimination based on race, belief, gender, social status, religion, nationality, age, or mental or physical abilities, and take action to rectify labor practices that violate human rights. We are committed to the eradication of forced labor and child labor. We do not condone any form of child labor and are committed to following minimum working age laws wherever we operate. We are committed to complying with laws concerning slavery and human trafficking wherever we operate. Acknowledging that our responsibility extends beyond legal compliance within our own operations, we also work to ensure that human rights are respected in the supply chain. We are contributing to the development of a society in which human rights are respected, by preventing the illicit use of personal information through implementation of countermeasures against increasingly sophisticated and devious cyber attacks and the resulting risk of the leaking of information that could be used to identify individuals. It is also our policy to support various international standards, such as the Universal Declaration of Human Rights, and the ILO (International Labour Organization) Declaration on Fundamental Principles and Rights at Work, and the Guiding Principles on Business and Human Rights.

Activities for FY 2017 to Contribute to SDGs

We explain the themes set out under Mitsui & Co.’s Materiality, and how we have linked these to the SDGs to focus our efforts on tackling the SDGs’ 17 goals and 169 targets. We also introduce some of the specific activities we implemented during the fiscal year ended March 2018.

Business Area

    Machinery & Infrastructure
    Innovation & Corporate Development
    Corporate & Others

[Theme] Support for International Standards

Initiatives by Mitsui & Co.

As a company engaged in business activities in many countries and regions around the world, we regard understanding the culture, traditions, and customs in each country and region and respecting human rights based on international standards as essential elements of our Basic CSR Policy. As an example of our initiatives in relation to indigenous peoples, in Japan we have signed an agreement related to Mitsui’s forests with the Biratori Ainu Association and the town of Biratori in Hokkaido, providing for cooperation in protection and fostering of Ainu traditional culture for future generations.

Please scroll horizontally to look at table below.

Related SDGs (Target Numbers) Business Area Activities for FY 2017
    End hunger, achieve food security and improved nutrition and promote sustainable agriculture (2.1, 2.2)
    Promote sustained, inclusive and sustainable economic growth, full and productive employment and decent work for all (8.7, 8.8)
    Reduce inequality within and among countries (10.2)
    Make cities and human settlements inclusive, safe, resilient and sustainable (11.4)
Machinery & Infrastructure
  • Maintenance and improvement of living environments and local job creation through global business activities relating to water, power generation, and gas. (10.2)
  • Offering of “Healthy Menu” choices in employee cafeterias (operated by AIM Services) and donation of school lunches for children in developing countries through Table for Two International, a non-profit organization (approx. 560,000 meals estimated to have been donated). (2.1, 2.2)
  • Support for the sale of RSPO (Roundtable on Sustainable Palm Oil) certified palm oil. (8.7, 8.8, 10.2)
  • Collection of written consent to the Supply Chain CSR Policy from 5,352 Japanese and overseas suppliers by Mitsui Bussan I-Fashion (MIF), which provides for the protection of human rights and ensures that there are no human rights abuses, in order to comply with international standards. (8.7, 8.8, 10.2)
  • Bluesign® certification obtained for outdoor apparel fabrics supplied by MIF, based on compliance with standards that include consideration for the environment, as well as the elimination of child labor, forced labor, and discrimination, freedom of association, and labor health and safety. (8.7, 8.8, 10.2)
Corporate & Others
  • Publication of a statement calling for prevention of forced labor and other forms of modern slavery, as well as human trafficking, in response to section 54 of the UK Modern Slavery Act 2015 (Mitsui & Co., and its affiliated companies). (8.7, 8.8)
  • Visits to 5 Ainu association groups that are located in areas near Mitsui-owned forests in Hokkaido to conduct interviews on forest practices and activities in Mitsui’s forests in connection with the FPIC (Free, Prior and Informed Consent of indigenous peoples and other stakeholders based on adequate information obtained) as required for FSC® certification. (10.2)
  • Continuation of an agreement with the Biratori Ainu Association and the town of Biratori in Hokkaido, providing for cooperation in efforts to ensure that Ainu culture is protected and handed down to future generations through Mitsui’s forests. (11.4)

[Theme] Promotion of Management for Human Rights

Initiatives by Mitsui & Co.

To raise the awareness of management and employees regarding respect for human rights, we conduct e-learning and seminars, and implement measures to spread understanding of the UN Global Compact throughout the organization.

Please scroll horizontally to look at table below.

Related SDGs (Target Numbers) Business Area Activities for FY 2017
    Ensure inclusive and equitable quality education and promote lifelong learning opportunities for all (4.7)
    Achieve gender equality and empower all women and girls (5.c)
    Promote sustained, inclusive and sustainable economic growth, full and productive employment and decent work for all (8.5)
    Reduce inequality within and among countries (10.2)
    Promote peaceful and inclusive societies for sustainable development, provide access to justice for all and build effective, accountable and inclusive institutions at all levels (16.5)
Innovation & Corporate Development
  • Development of cyber security personnel through the dispatch of lecturers to universities and the development of curriculums. (4.7)
Corporate & Others
  • Implementation of compliance tests (e-learning) for persons who have not yet completed this process. (4.7)
  • Implementation of Compliance Review Week activities, including the dissemination of messages by the President and CCO, and others, as well as seminars and panel discussions. (4.7)
  • Distribution of the “Compliance Handbook” to domestic affiliated companies and the implementation of e-learning regarding said handbook. (4.7)
  • Publication of internal alerts regarding compliance (via intranet, meetings, etc.), and sharing information through reporting lines on actual disciplinary cases. (4.7)
  • Creation of an LGBT handbook and the holding of seminars (held at the Head Office and domestic branches and offices simultaneously; 137 participants) for the purpose of gaining a proper understanding of LGBT, and the release of a message from the chairperson of the Diversity Promotion Committee with the aim of realizing diversity and inclusion. (5.c)
  • Implementation of surveys on compliance status with the UN Global Compact at all locations in and outside Japan (including affiliated companies). (8.5,10.2,16.5)
  • Collection of a commitment to comply with the Business Conduct Guidelines for Employees and Officers and the Standards for Discipline of the Employment Regulations from all applicable employees and officers. (10.2)
  • Implementation of Compliance Awareness Survey (for domestic employees and officers). Formulation and implementation of compliance activities based on the results of the survey. (10.2)
  • Promotion of compliance-related activities at overseas trading subsidiaries and affiliated companies in line with initiatives by Mitsui’s Tokyo Headquarters. (10.2)
  • Convening of domestic affiliated company CCO meetings and visits made individually to key affiliated companies to provide advice on the establishment and operation of compliance systems. (10.2)
  • Provision of expert advice with regard to the management of environmental and societal risks through the Environmental & Societal Advisory Committee. (10.2)

Support for International Standards

ILO Core Labour Standards

The International Labour Organization (ILO) was founded in 1919 as an international organization responsible for drawing up and overseeing international labor standards. The ILO is a tripartite agency that brings together representatives of governments, employers, and workers to shape programs together on the subjects of human rights, occupational safety and health, hiring policies, and the development of human knowledge for the adoption of ILO agreements and recommendations.
In 1998, the ILO established the ILO Declaration on Fundamental Principles and Rights at Work. As the basic rights of workers (ILO Core Labour Standards), they are defined in the 8 conventions in 4 fields (freedom of association and the right to collective bargaining C87/C98; the prohibition of all forms of forced labor C29/C105; elimination of the worst forms of child labor C138/C182 and non-discrimination in employment C100/C111).
Mitsui supports the 8 conventions constituting the ILO Declaration on Fundamental Principles and Rights at Work.

Respecting Indigenous Peoples

When conducting operations, Mitsui complies with all laws of the applicable country or region. Furthermore, Mitsui respects the human rights and cultures of its indigenous peoples in accordance with international standards such as the United Nations Declaration on the Rights of Indigenous Peoples, and Free, Prior and Informed Consent recognized in the said declaration, as well as the Convention concerning Indigenous and Tribal Peoples in Independent Countries (ILO Convention: C169).
For example, in our forest resources business for pulp and paper manufacturing in Australia, we are exercising due diligence by assessing the level of impact that Mitsui's projects might have on the indigenous Aboriginal population. As part of our research into available solutions in the event that any problems are discovered, we conduct advance surveys from the viewpoint of cultural protection to ensure that our operations will not destroy Aboriginal historical sites. In our iron ore mining operation in Brazil, we maintain close communication with the indigenous people living in the Amazon to foster mutual respect.
In Japan, Mitsui has entered into agreements with the Biratori Ainu Association and with the town of Biratori in Hokkaido, where a part of Mitsui's forests is located to cooperate in activities to protect, and pass on Ainu traditional culture through the conservation of forests.

Respect for Human Rights of Security Personnel (Policy)

The UN Code of Conduct for Law Enforcement Officials was adopted in December 1979 so that the UN can promote and ensure that law enforcement authorities such as the police and the military in member countries take on appropriate roles as well as respecting and protecting human dignity. The Principles on the Use of Force and Firearms by Law Enforcement Officials was also adopted in August/September 1990 as the standard for the use of force and firearms by law enforcement officials.
Mitsui supports these codes of conduct and principles, select security firms based on the content thereof and pay due consideration to human rights of security personnel.

Anti-Slavery and Human Trafficking Statement for FY2017

Mitsui & Co., Ltd. and its affiliates have published an Anti-Slavery and Human Trafficking Statement for FY2017 in response to section 54 of the UK Modern Slavery Act 2015. Please refer to the following link for details.

FY2017 Anti-Slavery and Human Trafficking Statement (PDF 408KB)

More detailed information can be found in our Sustainability Report.

Sustainability Report 2018

P.58–60 “Respect for Human Rights” (PDF 106KB)

  • Activities for FY 2017 to Contribute to SDGs
  • Support for International Standards
  • Promotion of Management for Human Rights