Sumitomo Rubber Industries, Ltd. is pleased to announce our participation in the launch of the Global Platform for Sustainable Natural Rubber (GPSNR) as a founding member. As a participant in GPSNR, the Sumitomo Rubber Group has also established our own "Sustainable Natural Rubber Policy" with the aim of making natural rubber a sustainable resource for the future. The establishment of this new platform, which aims to set global standards for sustainable natural rubber, was initiated by the CEOs of the World Business Council for Sustainable Development (WBCSD) Tire Industry Project (TIP) in November of 2017 and finalized with a launch event held in Singapore on October 25, 2018.
In striving to be a corporate group that contributes to the realization of a sustainable society, the Sumitomo Rubber Group has long been actively engaged in various efforts to improve the sustainability of our business activities. One of the most important of these efforts is working toward achieving sustainable natural rubber, as natural rubber is the primary raw material in our main product: tires. With global demand for tires expected to grow alongside the development of the mobility societies of the future, there is growing concern about the problems that may arise from increased demand for natural rubber, such as environmental damage caused by deforestation in regions that produce natural rubber or human rights violations associated with poor working conditions.
Since joining the Sustainable Natural Rubber Initiative (SNR-i) established by the International Rubber Study Group (IRSG) in October 2016, our group has been actively pursuing independent sustainability efforts. Now, with our participation in GPSNR, our group is committed not only to promoting more proactive, collaborative efforts that involve both supply chains and various other stakeholders, but also to redoubling our own efforts toward attaining natural rubber sustainability in accordance with our newly established "Sustainable Natural Rubber Policy."