Outokumpu’s operations have economic impacts on the local, national and global communities in which the Group operates. Outokumpu contributes to the community's well-being through paying taxes, through direct and indirect employment, and other means of community involvement.
As a listed company Outokumpu is committed to making a profit for the benefit of its shareholders. The company delivers on this commitment by developing and maintaining competitive and profitable operations based on ethical business practices.
Sustainable profits are top priority for Outokumpu
Value added by our operations demonstrates that our products are needed. Our operations benefit society. Outokumpu's goal is a stable and profitable business model.
Being a global leader in stainless steel means that a larger share of the global stainless steel demand is satisfied by Outokumpu. Therefore, because of our sustainability practices, the global society benefits overall. Our main areas of direct economic impact are our financial interactions with customers, suppliers, employees, the public sector, creditors and shareholders.
Outokumpu contributes to the well-being of local, national and international communities through tax payments, through direct and indirect employment and by participating in other societal activities. The impact of taxes on societal well-being is both direct and indirect.
Taxes by country
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Outokumpu participates actively and openly in the life of communities where it operates
Outokumpu operates in a competitive industry where demand and supply meet on global markets. On the other hand, our production sites are often located in relatively small cities or towns. This means that Outokumpu is significant to the small local community's economy, and often one of very few private sector employers in the area. Finding a balance between global market trends and responsibility towards communities is sometimes difficult, especially in difficult times such as economic downturns. Both possible investment and closures are also considered from a local perspective. Decisions have a major impact on communities, not only on Outokumpu personnel and their families, but on local goods suppliers and service providers as well.
Important Outokumpu locations include Avesta and Degerfors in Sweden, New Castle (Indiana) in the US, the Kemi-Tornio region in Finland, and Dahlerbrück and Dillenburg in Germany. In all those locations, the main impact comes from direct and indirect employment: we are economically important for local society through the incomes and taxes Outokumpu creates in the region.
Beyond a major impact on Outokumpu personnel and their families, the Group’s operations also affect local communities through creating demand for local goods suppliers and service providers. Recent investments includes the EUR 310 million investment in the expansion of the Group’s ferrochrome production in Tornio, Finland, EUR 108 million to increase stainless quarto plate production capacity in Degerfors, Sweden, and a further EUR 108 million to modernize the cold-rolling mill in Krefeld, Germany. For example the ferrochrome expansion resulted in around 120 permanent jobs in the Kemi-Tornio region.
More information can be found in our Sustainability Report 2015.
Stakeholder engagement to focus on material issues
One of Outokumpu's main corporate responsibility objectives is enhancing transparency by conducting an open and continued dialogue with key stakeholders. For Outokumpu, being aware of stakeholders' expectations is essential. Good communication increases mutual understanding. Outokumpu utilizes many different forms of interaction with stakeholders ranging from webinars to face-to-face meetings in many forums – at seminars, workshops and discussion panels, during road shows, and at fairs and exhibitions. In this ongoing dialogue, particular attention is given to contact with analysts, investors, employees, potential employees, non-governmental organizations (NGOs), customers and suppliers. Other key stakeholder groups are local communities, industrial and business organizations, authorities, schools and universities.
In 2015, Outokumpu’s stakeholders were surveyed on their opinion of material aspects. A total of 438 stakeholders participated. Important stakeholder groups, such as customers (85), suppliers (59), employees (231), investors, the authorities and NGOs, were included in the process through different actions; customers during Outokumpu’s customer event Experience 2015, and all suppliers via a letter from our CEO; employees were requested to participate via Outokumpu’s intranet. The authorities and NGOs were included by Outokumpu’s network of personal contacts. Outokumpu’s own assessment of material aspects was discussed and assessed by Group experts involved in corporate responsibility, as well as by the leadership.
Some of the topics have been grouped:
• Resource efficiency: Energy efficiency, supply of sustainable energy and recycling and circular economy
• Environmental impact: Management of emissions into air, of water, of waste and impact on land use and biodiversity
• Compliance: Ethical business conduct and compliance
The most relevant material sustainability themes for Outokumpu are for example safe and healthy workplace; resource efficiency; accountable and transparent governance and reporting; product responsibility and safety; and compliance.