To determine whether a topic is material, a combination of internal and external factors has been used. In the matrix below, the materiality of topics have been ranked according to the following criteria:
2. Importance to Bekaert business:
In the matrix below, the shaded area visualizes the measurable material topics included in this report.
Material aspects (per category):
1. Economic performance of the company
2. Promotion of social and economic development in the community
3. Upstream sustainable supply chain
4. Energy and emissions
6. Effluent and waste
The main tasks of the Board of Directors are to determine the Group’s strategy and general policy, and to monitor Bekaert’s operations. The Board of Directors is the company’s prime decision-making body with the exception of matters reserved by law or by the articles of association to the General Meeting of Shareholders. The Board of Directors currently has 13 members. Their professional profiles cover different areas of expertise, such as law, business, industrial operations, finance & investment banking, HR and consultancy. 38% of the Board members are female, exceeding the requirements of current regulations on diversity.
(GRI 102-18 GRI 103-2 GRI 103-3)
The Chairman and the Chief Executive Officer are never the same individual. The Chief Executive Officer is the only Board member with an executive function. All other members are non-executive Directors.
The composition of the Board of Directors of NV Bekaert SA has changed in 2020. For more information on the changes, and on activities and remuneration of the Board of Directors in 2020, please consult Bekaert’s Annual Report 2020.
The Bekaert Group Executive assumes the operational responsibility for the company’s activities and acts under the supervision of the Board of Directors. The executive management team is chaired by the Chief Executive Officer.
The composition of the Bekaert Group Executive changed in 2020. For more information on the changes in composition in 2020 and in 2021 and the performance and remuneration of the Bekaert Group Executive in 2020, please consult Bekaert’s Annual Report 2020.
(GRI 102-18 GRI 102-10)
Bekaert’s internal control framework consists of a set of group policies for the main business processes, and applies Group-wide. Bekaert has different tools in place to constantly monitor the effectiveness and efficiency of the design and the operation of the internal control framework.
The Internal Audit Department monitors the internal control performance based on the global framework and reports to the Audit, Risk and Finance Committee at each of its meetings. The Governance, Risk and Compliance Department reports to the Audit, Risk and Finance Committee at each of its meetings on risk and compliance matters.
The BGE regularly evaluates the Group’s exposure to risk, the potential financial impact thereof and the actions to monitor, mitigate and control the exposure.
This report has been prepared in accordance with the GRI Standards: Core option. Global Reporting Initiative (GRI) is a non-profit organization that promotes economic, environmental and social sustainability.
Bekaert’s responsible performance in 2020 has been recognized by its inclusion in the Solactive ISS ESG Screened Europe Small Cap Index and the Solactive ISS ESG Screened Developed Markets Small Cap Index - a reference benchmark for top performers in terms of corporate social responsibility based on Vigeo - Eiris’ research - as well as in Kempen SRI.
In 2020-2021 respectively rating agencies MSCI and ISS-ESG have analyzed the Environment, Social and Governance performance of our company, based on our publicly available information. Their reports are used by institutional investors and financial service companies. Bekaert received a rating of 'BBB' in the MSCI ESG Ratings assessment (above average) and 'C-' rating in the ISS-ESG rating (on a scale from D- to A+), which is on average within the sector.
For the fourth year in a row, Bekaert was awarded a gold recognition level from EcoVadis, an independent sustainability rating agency whose methodology is built on international CSR standards. The agency states that Bekaert forms part of the top 5% of all companies assessed in the same industry category.
In response to growing interest throughout the supply chain to report on the carbon footprint of operations and logistics, Bekaert also participates in the Climate Change and Supply Chain questionnaires of CDP (formerly known as the Carbon Disclosure Project).
Bekaert has received a 'B-' score in CDP’s Supplier Engagement Rating (SER), an improvement of 2 steps compared with previous ratings. Bekaert’s rating for disclosing and engaging with customers has significantly improved, bringing us in a leading 'A' rating position.
Bekaert has numerous corporate memberships, including various relevant bilateral chambers of commerce and general industry associations, such as Agoria, VOKA – Flanders and Wire Association International and cross-industry associations such as the Conference Board. Bekaert is also a member of national employer associations in all countries where Bekaert is active.
The Bekaert Policy on Conflict Minerals and Compliance Plan is available on the website.