Industry leaders form platform for sustainable rubber

rubberNatural rubber stakeholders gathered for the ceremonial launch of the Global Platform for

Sustainable Natural Rubber (GPSNR). The independent platform aims to improve socio-economic and environmental performance of the natural rubber value chain.

Stakeholders included tyre manufacturer, other rubber users, suppliers and processors, vehicle manufacturers, and NGO.

The GPSNR will work to harmonize standards to improve respect for human rights, prevent land-grabbing and deforestation, protect biodiversity and water resources, improve yields, and increase supply chain transparency and traceability.

The platform was initiated by the CEOs of the World Business Council for Sustainable Development (WBCSD) Tyre Industry Project (TIP) in November 2017 and has since been led by a Working Group of TIP member companies. Companies joining the platform must commit to be able to demonstrate the integration of principles for sustainable natural rubber into their purchasing and/or operational activities. The GPSNR is open to applications for membership from other natural rubber stakeholders.

Speaking at the launch Peter Bakker, President and CEO of WBCSD said “The tyre industry consumes around 70 percent of natural rubber and demand is growing. This throws into sharp relief the social, economic,and environmental opportunities associated with this important commodity. The GPSNR will consider the people, communities and natural resources touched by natural rubber production and supply – they all stand to benefit from the creation and adoption of sustainable and responsible practices.”

The ceremonial launch included the signing of a GPSNR Member Statement by the 11 members of TIP, and Ford Motor Company, Halcyon Agri Corporation Limited, ITOCHU Corporation, Kirana Megatara, SIPEF, The Socfin Group, and Southland Global PTE Ltd.

“This spirit of collaboration will define the actions of the platform going forward – there is strength in diversity, and the various interests and expertise within the GPSNR can deliver a truly sustainable natural rubber supply chain,” said Bakker.

The WBCSD’s TIP will head development of the GPSNR and financially support the platform during start-up and its first two years of. Despite industry backing the GPSNR will maintain its independence, overseen by a representative group of stakeholders.

“Successful mainstreaming requires actionable commitment from the entire supply chain. Best results are found where the various contributions of stakeholder groups are relative to their ownership of supply chain opportunities, their relevant expertise and their capacity to implement meaningful change,” said Anne-Cécile Remont, Director WBCSD TIP.

The GPSNR will be headquartered in Singapore and will begin operations in March 2019 with a general assembly.