Vientiane, Lao PDR, September 18,
2015— IFC, a member of the World Bank Group, today signed an advisory
services agreement with Stora Enso Lao Co., Ltd. to help the company improve
its social risk management in Lao People's Democratic Republic.
IFC and Stora Enso will work together
on stakeholder identification and engagement planning, including free,
prior, and informed consent in the company's operating procedures. As part
of the agreement, IFC will guide the company on the Government of Lao PDR's
requirements for land acquisition and concession licensing processes to
improve land management.
"Stora Enso Lao wants to implement
best practices to assess and manage environmental and social risks and
impacts," said Helena Axelsson, Deputy Chief Operating Officer of
Stora Enso Lao. "With IFC’s support, we will further strengthen our
outreach program to farmers and improve our community engagement according
to international best practice. This will include strengthening grievance
mechanisms and communications planning."
IFC's Forestry Investment Program in
Lao PDR supports development of business models for community-based reforestation
of degraded and underutilized land. The Forest Investment Program is a
targeted multi-donor fund and program within the framework of the Climate
Investment Funds. IFC, through community-forestry partnerships with
companies such as Stora Enso, aims to enhance technical skills of farmers
to improve their productivity, while mitigating climate change.
“This partnership raises the bar in
environmental and social standards in Lao PDR’s forestry sector,” said
Sergio Pimenta, IFC Global Head of Industry, Manufacturing, Agriculture,
and Services. “IFC’s global expertise can help provide Stora Enso with
the tailored services the company needs to improve its business performance.”
An industry leader in environmental and
social standards, Stora Enso Group is a global provider of renewable solutions
in packaging, biomaterials, wood, and paper. Its Lao PDR operations focus
on optimum use of land for wood and food production. The company has a
2,200-hectare concession for a pilot and feasibility plantation project
in Savannakhet and Saravane provinces.
While not investing in Stora Enso Lao,
IFC’s loan exposure to the Stora Enso Group is $238 million. In 2014,
Stora Enso's global sales topped $10.2 billion. The Stora Enso Group, publically
traded in Helsinki and Stockholm, employs approximately 27,000 professionals
in over 35 countries.
IFC, a member of the World Bank Group,
is the largest global development institution focused on the private sector
in emerging markets. Working with more than 2,000 businesses worldwide,
we use our capital, expertise, and influence, to create opportunity where
it’s needed most. In FY15, our long-term investments in developing countries
rose to nearly $18 billion, helping the private sector play an essential
role in the global effort to end extreme poverty and boost shared prosperity.
For more information, visit www.ifc.org
About Stora Enso
Stora Enso is a leading provider of renewable
solutions in packaging, biomaterials, wood, and paper on global markets.
Our aim is to replace non-renewable materials by innovating and developing
new products and services based on wood and other renewable materials.
We employ some 27 000 people in more than 35 countries, and our sales in
2014 were €10.2 billion. Stora Enso shares are listed on NASDAQ OMX Helsinki
(STEAV, STERV) and Stockholm (STE A, STE R). In addition, the shares are
traded in the U.S. as ADRs (SEOAY) in the International OTCQX over-the-counter