In a world where globalization has become the answer to every problem and population growth the problem to every answer, a mediating force between those who profit and those who suffer had to develop. In a capitalist driven world economy, corporations no longer have the leisurely pleasure to provide social services, but the tenacious obligation to do so.
The World Business Council for Sustainable Development defines corporate social responsibility as “the continuing commitment by business to behave ethically and contribute to economic development while improving the quality of life of the workforce and their families, as well of the local community and society at large.”
Several international corporations have taken steps to assure their Corporate Social Responsibility (CSR) is met. In Egypt, an awareness of CSR has evolved not just from corporations, but entities that monitor the economy. For instance, the American Chamber of Commerce has created a CSR committee where companies can gather to discuss their initiatives and cooperate on information regarding new issues in their programs. The last meeting held for the committee was on September 12, 2006. The guest speaker at the meeting was Barbara Ibrahim, director of the John D. Gerhart Center for Philanthropy and Social Engagement at the American University in Cairo.
The Egyptian Center for Economic Studies, a non-profit, non-government think-tank whose mission is to promote economic development in Egypt has also dedicated a prospective study on CSR in Egypt, its extent and those bodies who attempt to enhance it.
We at Egypt Oil & Gas Newspaper wholly support CSR and believe that some of these initiatives merit mention. Thus, what follows is essentially a highlight of some of the largest corporations in the oil and gas sector and the initiatives that they have undertaken in Egypt.