Sustainability an integral part of governance

The overarching goal of PostNord’s owners is for the company to create financial value and ensure the provision of universal postal services in Sweden and Denmark. The owners are of the view that strategic sustainability work promotes long-term growth.

Sustainability in corporate governance

The Swedish government has communicated that companies should have a business model characterized by profitability, long-term thinking and sustainability in order to develop in a favorable manner. The government is incorporating sustainability into the management of state-owned companies in order to ensure long-term value creation. Human rights, working conditions, the environment, anti-corruption, business ethics, equality and diversity are included in the government’s definition of sustainability. In 2012 the government turned to the boards of state-owned companies and imposed sustainability target management requirements. The targets must be comprehensive and few in number, relevant to the business, long-term and challenging, and clear and easy to communicate. During 2014 the Ministry of Finance will follow up sustainability initiatives with the board of each company.

The Swedish government set forth its view on the sustainability issue in “Sustainable Businesses”, published in the fall of 2013.

The Danish government has stated that a commercial view of social responsibility helps improve a company’s competitiveness and growth while also achieving social and environmental effects.

In March 2012 the Danish government published “Responsible Growth,” an action plan for corporate social responsibility for the 2012–2015 period. “Business-driven Social Responsibility”, published in June 2012, included examples of companies that combine business advantage with sustainability. The Danish Parliament passed a new law in 2013 on workplace equality in the country’s largest companies. In cases where one gender is underrepresented (less than 40 percent) on the board or in management, the company must set targets and adopt action plans for fulfilling the requirement.

Read more about PostNord’s corporate governance on pages 70–86 and targets on pages 20–21.

Climate plans for Sweden and Denmark

Swedish climate and energy policies have a threefold target for the period through 2020 (comparison year 1990):

1. At least half of the energy supply comes from renewable sources.

2. Energy efficiency increased by 20%.

3. Greenhouse gas emissions reduced by 40%.

This year the Danish government presented a plan to reduce the country’s greenhouse emissions by 40% during the period 2009–2020. Various sectors, including transportation, are included in the climate plan.

The national climate plans affect state-owned businesses, which are expected to contribute if their operations have an impact on the climate. PostNord’s operations are transport intensive, meaning that a reduction of carbon dioxide emissions is relevant to the group. Read more about PostNord’s environment and climate initiatives and targets on pages 59–61 and page 63.

Dialogues during the year

PostNord’s AGMs offer opportunities for dialogue with the owners. The 2013 AGM resolved to elect Jens Moberg as Chairman of the Board and to reelect and newly elect other board members. The AGM also resolved to distribute a dividend totaling SEK 103m (368) to shareholders and elected KPMG AB as the group’s new accounting firm. During the 2013 AGM question and answer period, the issues of delivery quality, work environment and workplace equality were addressed by the group’s highest officials. Read more on how PostNord works with these issues with regard to customers (pages 53–54) and to employees (pages 56–58). Read more about the AGM on page 75.

During 2013 the board dealt with issues related to the group’s sustainability initiatives and targets. Board members participated in seminars on sustainability with the Swedish owners. Read more about board’s work on pages 76–77.