EXCLUSIVE: Businesses must raise societal role beyond job creation and taxes

There has been a breakdown in trust between business and society across a variety of industries, particularly in the western world, which must be re-established, says Samantha Hoe-Richardson.

In an exclusive interview with edie, Anglo American’s head of sustainable development & energy, Samantha Hoe-Richardson, stressed the need to close the gap on business growth and protecting the needs of society.

“Companies in future will have to think about their role in society beyond job creation and paying taxes, royalties and dividends,” she said.

In addition to businesses needing to improve ethical standards, Hoe-Richardson said that in developing countries governments often lack the capacity to deliver the services to meet the growing expectations of their people.

She also expressed the difficulties of driving change in business due to “short termism”.

“There is a natural tendency in people to think short term, which can be frustrating when your world is the management of long term risks which are often hard to quantify,” said Hoe-Richardson.

“But that is starting to change and people are seeing how sustainability risks rank just as highly as short term risks,” she added.

Read the full interview ‘In conversation with Anglo-American’s Samantha Hoe-Richardson’

Leigh Stringer

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