Singapore – Natural rubber stakeholders have met for the inaugural general assembly of the Global Platform for Sustainable Natural Rubber (GPSNR), the platform announced 21 March.
The meeting, it said, approved of organisational statutes and code of conduct as well as the formation of an executive committee to oversee GPSNR’s strategic and operational activities.
The executive committee comprises representatives of: Rubber producers, processors and traders; Car makers, other downstream NR users, and financial institutions; Tire makers and other NR makers/buyers; and ‘Civil society’ groups.
The appointment of the executive committee is a critical piece to a landmark achievement, according to GPSNR director Stefano Savi.
“It has taken considerable effort from all stakeholders to bring us to this point,” Savi said in the GPSNR announcement.
“We know that the real hard work lies ahead, but today from Singapore we send a clear message – the GPSNR is open for business,” he added.
The Singapore-based platform has 39 founding members and remains open to membership applications from all stakeholders in the NR supply-chain.
In broad terms, GPSNR aims to serve as an independent platform that will lead improvements in the socio-economic and environmental performance of the NR value chain.
Initial priorities include harmonising standards around: human rights; prevention of land-grabbing and deforestation; protecting biodiversity and water resources; improving yields; and increasing supply chain transparency and traceability.
Its development was initiated by the CEOs of the World Business Council for Sustainable Development (WBCSD) Tire Industry Project (TIP) in November 2017.
The commitment of TIP members has been “a crucial driving force” in taking the GPSNR from concept to reality, according to Peter Bakker, president and CEO of the WBCSD.
“Today, our members are joined by a growing and increasingly well-balanced GPSNR membership of rubber value chain and civil society members,” said Bakker.
“The actors are in place, and the foundations for transformative action along the natural rubber value chain have been laid. Now the real work can begin,” he concluded.