Risk Management

ESG Risk Management

Policies and Basic Approach

Our business activities spreading widely across the globe face a range of risks. Both our business opportunities and business risks are growing and becoming more diverse with the globalization of economies, the development of networked societies, and the high level of awareness of corporate social responsibility. In addition, the speed of change in the environment surrounding management and business is increasing. As uncertainty rises, we regularly review our risk management policies to increase our sensitivity to risk and our ability to respond quickly.

Sustainability Governance and Oversight

Process of Managing Environmental and Societal Risks

Responding to Environmental and Societal Risks (as of April 2023)

Responding to Environmental and Societal Risks (as of April 2023)

For responding appropriately to changes in social conditions and business models, and managing risks comprehensively from both quantitative and qualitative perspectives, we have an effective risk management system in which risks related to the environment, society, and governance are important factors that are examined in decisions to promote any business.

For Mitsui & Co., which operates in countries and regions around the world, the policies of each country and region related to climate change have a significant impact on the profitability and sustainability of each of our businesses. We use the climate-change scenarios published by the International Energy Agency (IEA) and other organizations when we analyze scenarios involving businesses that have significant impacts. We also incorporate these climate-change scenarios into our in-house carbon-pricing system. In this way, we are gaining an understanding of business impacts both in terms of risk and opportunity. When considering investment projects, M&A, and other business decisions, we take these scenarios into account.

In conducting business, we have put in place a system to ensure that utmost consideration is given to the environment and society in projects at all stages, including at the launch of a new business, during operations, and even at the withdrawal from the business. Our Sustainability Committee discusses response policies and measures regarding environmental and social risks (including climate-change risk), then reports to the Executive Committee and the Board of Directors, which then applies them following approval.

ESG Due Diligence Checklists and the Sustainability Advisory Board

When planning new business or when expanding or withdrawing from operations, each Business Unit uses an ESG due diligence checklist to assess the ESG impact of environmental and social aspects. Environmental aspects include climate change, pollution prevention, ecosystems, and water stress. Social aspects include human rights, working environments, and occupational health and safety. Our ESG due diligence checklist is based on the World Bank Group's IFC Performance Standards that is an international standard for taking environmental and social factors into account. The checklists include more than 140 items and are created to thoroughly screen environmental and social risks in business. We manage our existing non-consolidated businesses based on international ISO14001 standards so that we can properly identify and manage environmental and social risks. We are encouraging our subsidiaries that have a large impact on the environment to establish their own environmental management systems based on ISO14001 or other international guidelines that cover environmental and social factors, to enhance their environmental management. We have a system in place for the rapid reporting of any environmental accidents or violations of environmental laws, regulations, and ordinances. In addition, as part of our response to our stakeholders, we hold dialogue with NPOs, NGOs, interdisciplinary organizations, and government agencies to better understand business risks and opportunities and to consider necessary measures to take.

We receive advice on how to reduce risk in high-ESG risk businesses from external consultants and our Sustainability Advisory Board, which is made up of external experts in fields including the environment and human rights. These parties provide advice during business start-up, operations, or withdrawal from a business. Depending on whether certain quantitative and qualitative standards are met or not, the Board of Directors, the Executive Committee, and the Representative Director, who supervise ESG risks, decide whether or not to proceed with the business, and what future action to take.

Furthermore, we have established the rules on ODA (Official Development Assistance) Business Management for promoting ODA business, which has a high public profile and, therefore, requires highly transparent operational processes. Under this system, Mitsui's ODA Projects Evaluation Committee reviews these projects as necessary and ensures appropriate risk management. In particular, we make a comprehensive assessment of risks related to bribery and corruption considering the significance of those issues.

Compliance and Integrity: Initiatives to Prevent Corruption

Target Domains Subject to ESG-Related Risk Management under the Ringi System

Target Domains Key Points for Deliberation
All new investment and financing projects
  • Significance and social value of the business itself
  • Significance of Mitsui engaging in this business
Environmental and social related business
Businesses considered to have significant environmental and social risk

Environmental risk:
businesses accompanying GHG emissions, businesses with other concerns about environmental impact, etc.
Social risk:
Labor-intensive projects, projects involving resettlement of residents, etc.
  • Contributions of such business to the environment and society
  • Measures to mitigate environmental load (incl. climate change, biodiversity loss, water risk)
  • Safety assurance and work environment
  • For development business, appropriate consideration for and understanding of the human rights of local residents and other related parties, and other related matters
  • Compliance with environmental laws, regulations and guidelines, etc.
Projects receiving subsidies
All projects that directly or indirectly receive subsidies from governmental and administrative agencies, or other such entities, both within and outside of Japan
  • Evaluation in light of Mitsui's management philosophy (MVV)
  • Social impact and ensuring accountability and process transparency
  • Determination of the interests of stakeholders, and resultant considerations and responses
  • Responsibility and capability over the medium-to-long term as the operator of a business with a high public profile
Business harboring other unusual reputation risks
Business that may be in conflict with public order and morality, Mitsui's management philosophy, etc. and business with a high public profile

Business involving utilization of sensitive personal information, social infrastructure business, Medical, healthcare and bioethics related business, etc.
  • Evaluation in light of Mitsui's management philosophy (MVV)
  • Social impact and ensuring accountability and process transparency
  • Determination of the interests of stakeholders, and resultant considerations and responses
  • Responsibility and capability over the medium-to-long term as the operator of a business with a high public profile
  • Ethical screening based on the guidelines of three Japanese government ministries (Ethical Guidelines for Human Genome and Genetic Sequencing Research: MEXT, MHLW, METI)
  • Approval by the ethics committee of the research institute in question, acquisition of informed consent, checking of processes, etc.