Corporate Social Responsibility, CSR

Corporate Social Responsibility, CSR has become one of the most important issues facing the mining industry. Nowadays, mining companies are expected to adhere to the principles of CSR and to recognize that they have a duty of care towards their stakeholders, including local communities. CSR can be defined as a companies’ voluntary action to improve social welfare, economic condition, and the environment through strategically planned projects that ensure sustainable benefits for stakeholders and the community. Over the past forty years, CSR has known the emergence of the environment as a worldwide concern and the eventual transformation of the term into “sustainable development” which incorporates social issues alongside environmental and development ones. CSR has been defined by the World Business Council for Sustainable Development 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 as of the local community and society at large.” For companies, this means the integration of social, environmental and economic concerns into that company’s values and policies. Thus, CSR in the mining industry, as a mean of operationalization of sustainable development, relates to the management of environmental and social impacts, as well as the maximization of economic benefits for the host country. CSR principles require companies to expand their commitments beyond making profit and obeying the law to increasing the social and environmental sustainability of the community in which they operate.

Morocco, like many other countries with large mining industries, is increasingly concerned about the serious environmental and social problems that mines under exploitation can cause. Mining industry in Morocco represents 35% of the value of exportations and contributes to the national GDP by 6, 5 (the Ministry of Energy, Mining, Water and Environment, 2013 Morocco). To face the growing social challenges across the mining sites, the phosphate industry is called to integrate ethical values and sustainable development principles in the organization to support good governance and to make more commitment to the economic and social development of the phosphate mines neighboring communities. This commitment is supposed to be open to permanent collaboration and dialogue with the various stakeholders concerned with the problematic of local development.