Sustainable Development involves the long term interests of human beings and affects enterprises and organizations. Every enterprise and organization should concern the interaction between their business and society, economy and environment. We should put more effort to construct a harmony and inclusive society with sustainable and resilient future for people. It ultimately enhances Hong Kong to be economic prosperity, social progress and environmental wellness.
The Chinese Manufacturers Association of Hong Kong launches ESG Pledge Scheme. By encouraging the public and business sectors to sign up the pledge, CMA wants to promote the concept of ESG (Environmental, social and governance) to Hong Kong. The scheme is co-operated with the Hong Kong Brand Development Council to provide valid supports to the participating organizations.
This management guide has confined the rights and the obligations of The Chinese Manufacturers Association of Hong Kong (the organizer). If there is any inconsistency or ambiguity between the management guide and other documentations, the management guide shall prevail.
1. DEFINITION AND TERMS
ESG Pledge Scheme of The Chinese Manufacturers Association of Hong Kong
The Chinese Manufacturers Association of Hong Kong
The Chinese Manufacturers Association of Hong Kong
Companies / Organizations of joining and signing the ESG Pledge Scheme
Companies/organizations that have been approved to join the scheme and promise to follow this management guide in order to protect the organizer interests.
Standard of the Scheme
The documents is prepared by the organizer and set out the relevant requirements for applicants to participate in the the Scheme and implement ESG, including but not limited to "ESG Implementation Practice Categories", "ESG Pledge Scheme" participation qualifications and application procedures, " ESG Pledge Scheme" Guidelines for the Use of the " ESG Pledge" Logo", suggested templates for the text and oral expressions of the " ESG Pledge" etc.
CMA "ESG Pledge Scheme" Steering Committee is a decision making authority formed by the Organizer
The Hong Kong Brand Development Council is the co-operative organization of the scheme. It provides technical support for the scheme's standards, including but not limited to formulating documents such as "ESG Implementation Practice Categories".
The process of certification and approval by the Organizer or its authorized representative to determine whether the applicant satisfies the relevant conditions and regulations.
The organizer's review of the documents and information submitted by the applicant is generally carried out in the form of documentation. In case of necessary, the organizer may carry out "In-depth review", including requesting the applicant to provide the original of the application materials, asking other relevant organization to verify, talks with the applicant's management or dispatches personnel to conduct on-site inspections at the applicant's operation site or production line.
The ESG Pledge Scheme logo, a distinctive visual symbol specially designed by the Organizer. ESG logo applied to all official occasions/activities related to the scheme and can also be used by the licensees for the purpose of business promotion and image building of related companies/organizations.
2. ELIGIBILITY FOR APPLICATION OF THE PLEDGE
(i) . Applicant must hold a valid Hong Kong business registration certificate;
(ii) . Applicant must have substantive business operations in Hong Kong
3. AUTHORITY AND ADMINISTRATION OF ESG PLEDGE SCHEME
(i) . The Organizer shall ensure impartiality of the Scheme at all times.
(ii) . The Organizer shall have the duty and the right to interpret the details in this document and publish document, as deemed necessary, to allow applicants and licensees to understand the intent and actual requirements of this document.
(iii) . The steering committee is the authority to review, monitor, renew, amend, suspend or terminate of any application, set standard of application/approval and administrate any other matters related to the Pledge on behalf of the Organizer.
(iv) . Hong Kong Brand Development Council, the co-operative organization, shall advise the organizer on the ESG implementation practices including the classifications, review of procedures and guidelines of the scheme and other standards-related matters.
(v) . The Organizer publishes information as necessary in order to inform and update applicants and licensees of the requirements and regulations for applying and maintaining the pledge.
(vi) .The Organizer shall review the documents submitted by the applicants before approving the application. If necessary, it may conduct an "in-depth review".
(vii) . The Organizer keeps all information provided by applicants in relation to an application for the pledge and all information obtained during an assessment in strict confidence. Under this provision, only those personnel who require the information for the processing of application and renewal of pledge will have access to such information. Such personnel will include the relevant committees under the organizer and its authorized organizations or persons, and personnel responsible for the management, support and other work of the the pledge. If the applicant is required to provide the personal information of the management or related persons during the application process, the relevant information will only be used for the application of the pledge, review and other legal purpose related of the pledge. Also, those information will be kept in a confidential manner.
(viii) . The Organizer may publicize in the media or other channels the eligibility for application and other matters related to the pledge including but not limit to posting the basic information of applicants and licensees through the organizer official website, the pledge's dedicated website, notice and other information facilities open to the public.
(ix) . The Organizer will investigate any complaint made to the Organizer by a third party against a licensee regarding activities included in its scope of the pledge.
(x) . The Organizer and other authorized parties shall not be liable to any loss or damage to applicants, licensees and other parties in relation to the usage of the pledge.
(xi) . The Organizer and other authorized parties should be indemnified by an applicant or licensee against any liability incurred by it in relation to the application, usage or any matter concerning the pledge.
(xii) . The organizer has the final decision on all matters related to the pledge and its decisions are binding.
(xiii) . The Organizer shall amend the contents of this document, the application standard and other related requirements and arrangements of the pledge from time to time without prior notice to applicants and licensees.
4. THE OBLIGATIONS OF AN APPLICANT AND LICENSEE
(i) . Applicants and licensees shall commit to follow the regulations stipulated in this document and other published requirements relevant to the pledge at all times.
(ii) . Applicants and licensees shall cooperate with the Organizer by providing verifiable facts and, to their best knowledge, all information pertinent to the pledge requirements. If the licensees submit the application based on false or misleading information, the application will be invalid and the organizer reserves the right to pursue legal action.
(iii) . Licensees shall ensure to use the ESG logo according to Guideline on the Use of ESG Pledge (Appendix A) and related regulation of the Organizer. The logo cannot be used on promoting particular products or services.
(iv) . Licensees shall ensure to strictly follow the Organizer guidelines when using and citing the pledge including but not limited to the suggested wordings of the written and oral expressions of the "Pledge".
(v) . Applicants or licensees shall inform the organizer in writing on the following changes relevant to the scheme within one month from the date of effective:
(1) Changes in laws and other supporting documents related to the application;
(2) Major changes on the form and arrangement of operations and business scope of the applicants;
(3) Change of the operating location(s) and company address;
(4) Major changes in the company's shareholding, governance structure, personnel arrangements and other aspects that will affect the application and eligibility.
(vi) . Licensees shall ensure the Organizer's reputation and interests will not be jeopardized under all circumstances.
5. RENEWAL OF APPLICATION, SUSPENSION AND TERMINATION
(i) . If necessary, the organizer may establish a validity period for the pledge and set up the procedures and requirements for renewal in order to examine whether the licensee continue to meet the requirements of the application.
(ii) . The Organizer may restrict, suspend and revoke the relevant qualifications of applicants/licensee from the Scheme in the following circumstances:
(1) The organization structure of the licensee has been changed and no longer meets the eligibility and standards of the pledge.
(2) The licensee does anything that damages the pledge or damages the reputation and interests of the organizer and co-operative organizations;
(3) The licensees is involved in any complaint cases, legal proceedings or negative events. After investigation, the organizer believes that it no longer meets the application standards or leads to negative impacts on the interests and reputation of the organizer and co-operative organizations;
(4) For any other reason, the organizer believes that licensee is unable or incapable of meeting the application criteria or leads to a substantial or potential negative impact on the pledge and the interests and reputation of the organizer and co-operative organizations.
(iii) The Organizer shall notify the licensee in writing of the decision of suspension or cancellation of the application, which shall take effect on the date of issuance of the notification. The notice does not require to state the reasons for the change.
(iv) . Within four weeks of the notice of suspension, the applicant or its authorized representative must provide in writing with a plan to correct the discrepancy and prevent the recurrence of similar incidents to the Organizer. The correction plan must be completed within six weeks. After re-examination, the applicant can resume the application/eligibility of the pledge if the organizer considers the result satisfactory.
v) . If the application cannot be resumed within six weeks after the suspension, the qualification of the licensee will be revoked and not be renewed. The relevant company/organization will need to re-apply in the future.
(vi) . During the period of suspension of application/approval and after the termination of application, the licensee cannot use the qualifications of the "pledge" to carry out any activities.
(vii) . If the licensee wants to cancel the pledge application, it shall notify the organizer in writing and explain the reason for the cancellation of the application.
(viii) . The Organizer shall not be liable for any loss or damage suffered by the licensee arising from whatever cause in connection with the termination, suspension or any changes to the qualifications.
(ix) . Applicants who are suspended, terminated or withdrawn from the scheme for any reason must immediately stop using the logo in media or or in any way, including but not limited to advertisements, promotional materials, commercial websites, mobile applications and social media platforms etc.
(x) . The organizer has the right to publish all information related to the applicant in the scheme, including but not limited to publishing the name and address/domain name of the applicant, and details of suspension/termination of the qualification.
(xi) . Applicants who have been terminated for any reason can only re-apply for the "ESG Pledge Scheme" after 12 months from the date of termination of the qualifications.
6. DISPUTES, COMPLAINTS AND APPEALS
(i) . An applicant or licensee may lodge a complaint or a dispute against any decision made or action taken by the Organizer. A written submission setting out the grounds of such complaint and dispute shall be made to the Organizer within 28 calendar days after such decision or action has been made or taken.
(ii) . The Organizer shall investigate and examine such complaints and disputes. The Organizer shall notify the organization concerned the outcome of such investigation and examination. No grounds of judgment of the outcome will be disclosed in the notification.
(iii) . The organization may lodge an appeal to the Organizer if it considers the outcome of the investigation and examination as specified in clause 6(ii) above is not acceptable. A written submission to the Organizer shall be made with grounds of the appeal within four weeks from the date of notification of a decision.
(iv) . Upon a request from an organization for appeal, the Organizer shall form an independent Appeal Committee to investigate the case.
(v) . The Appeal Committee shall make a decision on the review on the basis of the findings and inform the steering committee. The steering committee shall notify the organization concerned the outcome of such investigation and examination and no grounds of judgment of the outcome will be disclosed in the notification.