Umicore is a publicly listed company. As such, we interact with many parties who have an interest in the way we conduct business. The relationship that we foster with these parties or stakeholders has a direct impact on our success. Stakeholder engagement at Umicore is based on a localised approach whereby all sites are required to identify their respective stakeholders and establish suitable ways of engaging with them. In many cases, such as the dialogue with customers and suppliers, the stakeholder relationships are primarily managed by the business units themselves, in line with our decentralised approach to unit management.
Public Sector & Authorities
Umicore paid a total of € 133 million in taxes on our 2018 operations. Umicore and our employees also contributed a total of € 101 million in social security payments. Umicore periodically enters into partnerships with public institutions such as universities with the primary aim of furthering certain research projects. Similarly, partnerships and research grants are occasionally contracted with public organizations. Grants contributed to € 7.7 million to the EBIT in 2018. Umicore does not make donations to political parties or organizations as a matter of policy.
In 2018, we continued our efforts to inform public policy and foster contacts with public authorities worldwide. These efforts are coordinated through the Government Affairs department and focus primarily on Europe, North America and China. Umicore aims to raise the profile and understanding of our technologies and contribute to the discourse on materials-related issues. In Europe, this has centered on three main topics: resource efficiency, with policies dealing with waste and raw materials, and the ongoing developments for a Circular Economy in the EU; advanced materials as a key enabling technology for low carbon technologies; and advanced material for the purification of exhaust gases from automobiles and trucks with combustion engines. Our initiatives also include accessing EU and national government funding and innovation networks, particularly in the context of programs that support the development of breakthrough technologies with environmental benefits.
Umicore experts are often invited as members of working groups and panels initiated by European or national authorities. We are part of the European Innovation Partnership (EIP) on Raw Materials, B20-G20, the High-Level Group (HLG) on Key Enabling Technologies (KET), the Steering Committee of Energy Materials Industrial Research Initiative (EMIRI) ) and the ERA-MIN network on industrial handling of raw materials for European Industries, to name a few. In addition, Umicore is part of the European Institute of Technology’s Knowledge and Innovation Community on Raw Materials, a consortium of over 100 partners to address the accessibility, availability and efficient use of raw materials in Europe.