Total's CSR Program in Myanmar: Learn more about our initiatives

17/02/2017

Schoolchildren in the village of Kanbauk, Myanmar

Total launched its CSR program in 1995. Initially aimed at residents of the 13 villages closest to the pipeline, it was gradually extended to 33 villages and now benefits nearly 38,000 people. The program also includes nation-wide initiatives.

Well Defined Priorities

Total's CSR program enshrines one of the principles laid down in the Codes of Conduct of the Group and its Myanmar subsidiary, namely to contribute to the economic and social development of host countries. Its priorities, which were defined with the villagers, are education, public health, local job creation, micro-finance and access to energy. The program is underpinned by a commitment to sustainable development and, as such, encourages activities that the villagers can pursue independently. It is also reviewed and improved on an ongoing basis to ensure that it meets the needs of local communities as effectively as possible, notably by incorporating recommendations made during CDA's regular external audits. The Total E&P Myanmar subsidiary publishes an annual CSR report.

Local Involvement

The CSR program achieves balance and success through genuine commitment from the villages and their residents. It therefore has to meet their needs and respect their culture and way of life, which is why it was imperative to put Myanmar nationals in charge of its implementation. All but one of the 73 members of the CSR team are from Myanmar and all of the related projects are owned by the local communities concerned (for example, clinics and schools) or by the villagers themselves (agricultural projects and micro-enterprises).

A Voluntary Initiative to Promote Security and Human Rights

As a supporter of the Voluntary Principles on Security and Human Rights (VPSHR) initiative since its inception and full member since 2012, Total recently took steps to make its Myanmar stakeholders more aware of the rules governing security and human rights in its host regions. 
 
In a country first, teams from Total E&P Myanmar and numerous representatives of our local stakeholder groups met for two working sessions to discuss these sensitive issues and attempt to make headway. The meetings took place in June 2015 in Kanbauk, in the pipeline region, and Yangon, Myanmar's economic capital.
 
In organizing the working sessions, Total E&P Myanmar was seeking to foster constructive dialogue with local security forces, the police and the army, as well as with NGOs, other oil companies operating in Myanmar, and private security firms.
 
Total is committed to preventing any human rights violations and safeguarding the security of people working in and around its facilities. Reflecting this commitment, the initiative aimed to ensure that each person involved in enforcing the security of a region or facility fully understood how to react in the event of forced entry or violence. Two specific scenarios were examined and discussed at the seminars: what to do if there is a protest at a site, and how to react if people claim land in the pipeline region. 
 
Participants found the discussion and experience sharing to come out of this first stage highly constructive, and are already thinking about the next steps. One possibility under consideration involves providing similar training to private security staff.