Message from the CEO
As a financial services consulting group, we must thoroughly align ourselves with our customers' needs, be their best financial solutions partner, and shape the future of economies and societies.
As President & Group CEO of MHFG, I would like to express our deep appreciation for your continued interest in and support of our Group.
Mizuho recognizes that CSR initiatives help contribute to the sustainable development of society and provide the platform for creating and advancing corporate value, and we have positioned CSR initiatives as a pillar of our corporate conduct.
In implementing its CSR activities, Mizuho has identified the strengthening efforts to promote businesses that contribute to the sustainable development of society (core businesses), reinforce the Group's foundations that underpin activities in line with society's expectations (foundations), and promote social contribution activities that take into consideration the needs of local regions and society (social contributions), as three initiative policies to address over the medium to long term. Moreover, Mizuho has put forward the Group's annual initiative policy that helps to crystallize activities in each of these three initiative policies. Based on this policy, group companies formulate measures that take into consideration individual business strategies while working in unison to achieve the Group's overarching CSR goals.
Mizuho is also committed to addressing sustainability in a variety of fields, including social and environmental issues. Therefore, we aim to ensure that our corporate social responsibility (CSR) initiatives are strategic from a medium– to long–term perspective.
Changes in the External Environment
The direction of the global economy remains unclear and unpredictable. Although there are expectations for a recovery, centered on the US, there is remaining uncertainty surrounding US governmental policies, political issues in Europe, and trends in the Chinese economy.
Also, many developed countries are experiencing depopulation, facing declining birthrates and an aging populace. Coupled with globalization, climate change, higher geopolitical risk around the world, the rise of anti–globalization sentiment, and issues surrounding income disparity and poverty, it is clear that major global economic and social structural changes are taking place. I believe we are at a major turning point. We cannot continue on in the same direction as before. We must transform our organization to enable us to weather these changes and thrive in the coming era.
Also, in recent years, more is expected of companies in terms of addressing social issues, especially considering the shared world–wide goals for sustainable development which are now in place such as the United Nations' sustainable development goals (SDGs) and the Paris Agreement, a new framework on climate change.
Mizuho is aware of the need to address them from medium– to long–term risk and opportunity perspectives. We intend to actively contribute to the solution of social issues through our business, and carry on responsible business activities that take both human rights and environmental issues in consideration.
For the Sustainable Development of Society and Mizuho
In fiscal 2016, we formulated the FY2016–2018 Group CSR Initiative Policy mainly based on changes in the external environment, the expectations of stakeholders, and Mizuho strategies in order to serve as our policy for CSR initiatives during the period of the new Medium–term Business Plan.
In our core businesses, we will work primarily to develop industries that take into consideration global issues, help revitalize regional economies, promote a more efficient flow of financial assets in Japan, and encourage creation and innovation in businesses that apply new technologies, including the newly emerging "FinTech" sector. In addition, we will contribute to financial solutions unique to Mizuho, in cooperation with a broad range of stakeholders, related to growth strategies for Japan as it heads toward the Olympic and Paralympic Games Tokyo 2020 and beyond.
*Mizuho Financial Group is a Tokyo 2020 Gold Banking Partner.
In addition, we have positioned responsible investing, which is of strong interest to our stakeholders, as a major initiative and are working to manage environmental and social risks in project finance and strengthen our framework for promoting responsible investing.
In terms of foundations, we will continually strengthen Mizuho's corporate governance as this will not only support our efforts to become a financial services consulting group but also contribute to the ongoing enhancement of our corporate value. We will also make efforts to encourage the active participation of employees.
Mizuho has already proven to be a front–runner in corporate governance among Japanese financial institutions as a result of our efforts to strengthen the functions of our holding company and our early transition to the "Company with Three Committees" model. Going forward, we will continue to ensure strict compliance with Japanese laws and regulations in addition to proactively implementing global best practices in terms of business operations and administration, as befitting a globally expanding financial group. Going forward, we will make every effort to further enhance the sophistication of our corporate governance.
At Mizuho, we strongly believe that a financial institution's most valuable asset is its people. We will continue to implement fundamental reforms in human resources management in order to maximize employee engagement throughout our entire workforce. As we transition to human resources management practices which respect and focus on the individual, we will promote diversity and inclusion as a means of supporting the advancement, development, and active participation of women, non–Japanese nationals, and other diverse talent. We will also put forward initiatives in areas such as flexible work arrangements and employee health management.
Regarding social contributions, we will continue to proactively support financial education, which is an activity well–suited to the capabilities and interests of financial institutions while also promoting activities that reflect the needs of local communities and society at large.
In implementing our CSR initiatives, we will actively disclose information through our integrated reports, website, and other means as we take into account the perspective of ESG, which is rising substantially in importance, and the new disclosure frameworks proposed by TCFD* and others. We will also work to substantially strengthening communication with stakeholders.
- *Task Force on Climate–related Financial Disclosures
This Task Force was formed in December 4, 2015 by the Financial Stability Board (FSB), as the first international initiative to highlight climate change as a risk factor for the stability of the global financial system.
It is in our DNA to be a trailblazer and we must maintain a broad and forward–looking perspective in order to foresee our customer' needs and predict further economic and social change. By identifying solutions and strategies for these needs and changes, we can work in close partnership with our customers to contribute to the sound development of local economies and societies.
We must also proactively respond to the expectations of all our stakeholders, including our shareholders as well as our customers, our communities, our own management, staff and their families.
President & Group CEO
Mizuho Financial Group, Inc.