Stakeholder engagement

GRI 2-29: Approach to stakeholder engagement

Two years ago, the most relevant internal and external stakeholders were identified in a workshop with experts from Alpiq Group. The selection was made on a basis of the significance of the impact of Alpiqʼs activities on stakeholders and vice versa on their influence on Alpiq Group. Four groups of stakeholders were classified in last yearʼs Sustainability Report (see “GRI 102-40: List of stakeholder groups”): investors and financial service providers, business partners, the general public including NGOs, and employees as an internal stakeholder group.

Figure 7: Stakeholder engagement

Stakeholder engagement has a very high priority for Alpiq. Therefore, Alpiq is in an ongoing exchange with the various stakeholders. The regularity of the external contacts as well as the channels used for them vary depending on the stakeholder group. The dialogue with the shareholders is maintained via the Secretary of the Board and the Annual General Meeting as well as through contact with the Board of Directors.

Exchange with the other stakeholder groups takes place with varying intensity and is highly dependent on the situation; it is particularly ensured via our specialists in the different departments and business units and as well via public and investor relations. For example, Alpiq is actively involved in professional associations through committees, commissions and working groups with the aim of working towards sustainable economic framework conditions for the Swiss electricity sector at the political and administrative levels. Alpiq is also in direct and continuous dialogue with political decision-makers (members of parliament, energy and environmental commissions) and government administration with the aim of mitigating and minimising risks and uncertainties in the political process. Alpiq continuously monitors and analyses political events and intervenes in specific legislative proposals to secure good framework conditions in the long term.

Alpiq also works closely with NGOs, particularly in infrastructure projects and in connection with the impact on the environment (e.g. close cooperation with WWF and Pro Natura in the area of compensation measures relating to Nant de Drance).

The internal contact to employees is guaranteed through various channels and platforms for informal and formal direct dialogue with and amongst employees. Alpiq is aware of the importance of stakeholders for a successful business and attaches great importance to knowing their interests, needs and expectations. For example, interviews were conducted with various stakeholders during the reporting period regarding Alpiqʼs sustainability framework and reporting. Their feedback was crucial in the development of the framework, as Alpiq has set itself the goal of creating transparency and trust through comprehensive ESG reporting. In addition, stakeholders should be provided with sufficient, high-quality data for their own reporting and ratings.

Various internal workshops were also held on the topic of diversity and inclusion. This gave employees the opportunity to express their opinions on these topics and to actively participate in internal development (see “GRI 405: Diversity and equal opportunity”).

GRI 2-30: Collective bargaining agreements

In Switzerland, no employees are covered by collective bargaining. Collective bargaining does, however, exist in Spain and Italy, affecting 10.7% of employees in the Alpiq Group. Alpiq is committed to International Labour Organisation (ILO) principles which include the right to freedom of association and collective bargaining.