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More responsible businesses can foster more growth in Europe

25/10/2011

A responsible approach to business means more, and more sustainable, economic growth. This is why the European Commission has presented a package of measures to support entrepreneurship and responsible business.

First, the Social Business Initiative will help this emerging sector to fulfil its unexploited potential. This is complemented by an ambitious strategy for Corporate Social Responsibility to generate a higher level of trust and consumer confidence and improve companies' contribution to society's well-being. Both initiatives reinforce Commission efforts to engage with the private sector on social and environmental issues, especially relevant in times of public budget constraints.

The Commission is also proposing to improve transparency and promote sustainable business among multinationals. Mining and forestry companies would have to be more open about taxes, royalties and bonuses paid worldwide.

Finally, the Commission is proposing to simplify accounting rules for SMEs, potentially saving them up to €1.7 billion per year. The proposals would also reduce burdensome reporting obligations for listed companies, including SMEs, adding further to cost savings.

Commissioner for Employment, Social Affairs and Inclusion László Andor said “Socially responsible business stems from a realisation that the crisis is not just economic and financial but also about ethics. Values like solidarity, sustainability, inclusiveness and integrity are not always upheld by business and I believe our economies have suffered as a result. This is where social business and CSR can have a decisive impact and thus also contribute to Europe’s 2020 goals of more jobs and growth."

More information about the key elements of the package - Press release Choose translations of the previous link 

Related documents:

Social Business Initiative

Communication on Corporate Social Responsibility

Proposal to revise the Transparency Directive:

Proposal to revise the Accounting Directives: