Foreword by the Chairman of the Board of Management.
Timotheus Höttges, Chairman of the Board of Management, Bonn, Germany.
The information and knowledge society is becoming increasingly dynamic. The amount of data and knowledge available online is growing exponentially and digital applications are enriching our every day lives. This calls for fast broadband networks.
That is why we as a telecommunications company bear considerable social responsibility. We create the infrastructure that helps permanently simplify life and improve its quality. We lay the foundation for innovation and participation in society by investing extensively in network expansion – more than EUR 3 billion in Germany alone in 2013. Our many innovations in the area of health are only a few examples. With our telemedical solutions, we make it possible for people who are ill and in need of care to be monitored remotely so that they can continue to live independently in their familiar surroundings.
But Telekom is more than just an infrastructure provider. Responsible conduct is part of our DNA. This CR report includes a wealth of examples of how and in what areas Telekom pursues corporate responsibility as well as the progress we have made over the past year in different areas.
Data privacy is at the top of our list. Data security criteria are included in our product development processes right from the start. In 2013, for example, we considerably improved the anti-eavesdropping security of mobile communications by implementing the A5/3 encryption standard throughout Germany.
And we also work to protect the climate. By approving a Group-wide climate protection target in 2013, we made it possible to measure our progress in reducing CO2 emissions at an international level. We are planning to reduce our CO2 emissions by the year 2020 by 20 percent compared to 2008.
Social topics are high on our list as well. With our Social Charter , which we revised in 2013, we have sharpened our focus on topics such as how well our global suppliers respect human rights issues. We also began including a CR clause in all of our supplier contacts in June 2013. The clause describes the ethical, social, ecological and anti-corruption standards that we expect from our partners.
It is with conviction that I continue to pursue the clear commitment made by my predecessors to run the company responsibly and to comply with the principles set forth in the Global Compact of the United Nations. I am particularly interested in making it even more clear how important sustainability and social responsibility are to the value of our company. The ongoing integration of non-financial key performance indicators into our annual report is an effective step in this direction.