‘Firms set to contribute millions to communities’


22-December-2012

The children, ministers, Berjaya resort managers and STB representatives after the presentation

Those we have spoken to have said they are happy to make the contribution, adding they have already been helping communities and will be glad to continue.

One of the firms is the Berjaya Beau Vallon Bay resort whose general manager Ken Choo yesterday said he is sure his organisation’s input will run into millions of rupees.

He was speaking to Nation as two ministers presented school bags and stationery donated by the resort to 60 children from the Beau Vallon primary school under a Seychelles Tourism Board (STB) initiative to encourage tourism establishments to contribute to the environment and communities.

Their school helped identify who among them needed that kind of support most, and the resort’s purchasing manager Lucie Jasmin said Berjaya deemed school bags and stationery the most ideal items for the recipients and bought them overseas.

The gifts were handed to the pupils by Education Minister Macsuzy Mondon and Social Affairs, Community Development and Sports Minister Vincent Meriton.

Mr Meriton told Nation “the Ministry of Finance is working on the modality and a committee involving government, and the private sector will be set up to ensure there is transparency in the way the money is spent in such a way that it touches people in all walks of life and reaches the grassroots”.

“We want to build values among the youth,” said Mr Meriton, who is also the Designated Minister.
He said there will be a number of projects that will be eligible for consideration.

In his budget address, Mr Laporte said corporate social responsibility (CSR) is a concept whereby businesses act to balance their economic growth by contributing to the sustainable, social, and environmental development of the country, adding:

“Today many businesses generously contribute to their communities or toward good causes, either through direct funding of social projects or through donations and sponsorship. But corporate social responsibility should be by all and not only by some. It is in this spirit, and in order to get businesses to give back to the community, that I propose the introduction of a CSR contribution, which will be applied on all businesses which make a turnover of R1 million and above at rate of 0.5% equivalent of turnover. This concept of CSR is one that is practiced in other countries, such as our neighbour, Mauritius.”

He said firms will take part either through sponsorship, donation, direct funding of community projects or deduction by the Seychelles Revenue Commission toward an CSR fund the government will create.

Businesses whose contribution will be less that 0.5% of turnover will pay the balance to the fund at the time of assessment of tax obligations.

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