Leading Indian companies-- ITC Ltd and Reliance Industries Ltd (RIL)-- have received top rating in Asia for their corporate social responsibility (CSR) initiatives, according to report by the Hong Kong-based brokerage and investment firm, CLSA.
In a report--Ethical Asia--that analyses CSR performance of 50 large corporates in Asian countries, including India, China, Japan and Malaysia, CLSA has given a rating of five points (highest in the scale of 1 to 5) to ITC and RIL.
India as a country represented by seven large corporates has received an average rating of 3.7 for its CSR initiatives within Asia.
Other Indian companies -- Infosys, Tata Consultancy Services and Larsen & Toubro-- have received four points out of five.
While Sterlite Industries got a rating of three, Tata Motors came last in the list with a rating of one point.
"Ratings are based on criteria such as environmental impact, social impact, corporate governance, transparency and level of detail in the CSR reports filed by the companies,"
Interestingly, ITC and RIL are among the only four companies in entire Asia to have received a rating of five.
The other two companies are Cathay Pacific of Hong Kong and Mitsubishi UFJ F of Japan.
In its CSR report, ITC, the tobacco-to-hospitality firm, has demonstrated that the company promotes sustainability and low-carbon growth as a competitive value proposition for business.
Similarly, RIL's focus on energy security, growth and health & safety, environment, product responsibility and water conservation practice made it score five.
In case of Infosys, the CSR report published by the company was comprehensive, but compared to companies that received five points, the report focused more on economic focus as opposed to social and environmental emphasis, as per CLSA.
L&T that also has been rated four, invests in clean fuel and introduces environment-friendly technologies and runs an in-house awareness programme to combat Aids/HIV.
Tata Consultancy that scored four out of five, is contributing to the environment through its IT-solutions. The company also investing in programmes to benefit children.
Sterlite Industries which got a score of three, is trying to make an effort to reduce energy consumption and increase efficiency , but is finding it challenging according to CLSA report.
In case of Tata Motors', CLSA has said that its CSR report lacks transparency. "The lack of hard data demonstrating the impact of its actions places Tata Motors among lowest in rankings."
The company talks a lot about what it plans to do, but does not provide enough data to show what it has done.
"For instance, though it plans to invest in advanced technology CO2 abatement, there is not mention of the amount invested," the CLSA report added.