Economic responsibility

Economic responsibility

Our ability to deliver value creation for our shareholders by focusing on improved profitability, strategic positioning and debt reduction lies at the heart of our commitment to sustainability.

We contribute to the economic prosperity of society through payments to governments, suppliers and employees, as well as returns to shareholders.

We facilitate social and economic wellbeing by using labour drawn from local communities, and the services of small and medium enterprises situated in the areas around plantations and production facilities. We also have a best practice training programme and, through our corporate social responsibility programmes (in EuropeNorth America and South Africa) together with our enterprise development programme in South Africa, invest in the socio-economic development of the communities in which our workers live.

The indirect economic benefits of our operations impact on sectors including technical, construction and engineering services which are outsourced to a wide variety of contractors. The chemicals industry, in particular, is one of our major suppliers. In addition, the provision of services including the collection of waste paper for the industry and the outsourcing of non-core activities such as maintenance, medical services, transportation, cleaning and security creates opportunities for small-, medium- and micro enterprises.

Our industry stands on the cusp of renewal as plantation and forest derived bioproducts emerge as a global game changer in a carbon constrained future.

Our integrated pulp and paper mills are ideal platforms from which to meet future market demand for carbon neutral bio-energy, biochemicals, biomaterials, nanomaterials, neutraceuticals and pharmaceuticals. Integrating the extraction and beneficiation of plantation and forest derived biocompounds with our mill processes is significantly more efficient than standalone operations; giving us a head start in growing adjacent businesses that add additional value to the wood we use in our pulp and paper businesses.

In terms of Project Grow, our enterprise development initiative in South Africa, in 2015, more than 3,800 small growers and 41 community projects farmed over 22,022 hectares of Eucalypt plantations.
2015 Sappi Group Sustainability Report

We hold ourselves accountable to global sustainability best practice standards by transparently measuring, monitoring and communicating our economic, social and environmental performance.

Active corporate citizenship programmes relevant to the needs of the communities where we operate ensure that we promote socio-economic development within these communities.

Recognising that we live in a world where natural resources are under increasing pressure, we aim to lighten our environmental footprint.