Volkswagen Group commits suppliers to sustainability

Jul 1, 2019

  • Volkswagen Group introduces Sustainability Rating for suppliers
  • Ratings evaluation system will focus on risks related to human rights, environmental protection, corruption

Wolfsburg — The Volkswagen Group introduced a worldwide Sustainability Rating for its suppliers today. The ratings process enables the company to assess the sustainability conduct of its business partners in its supply chain with regard to risks relating to human rights, environmental protection and corruption.

"We are convinced that a sustainable supplier network is a guarantee of long-term corporate success. Sustainability is becoming a decisive business factor," says Dr. Stefan Sommer, Board Member for Components and Procurement.

In the Sustainability Rating process, the suppliers first provide a self-assessment of their sustainability conduct by answering a questionnaire and supplying supporting documentation. The data and documents are checked by qualified third parties, and in case of doubt, on-site checks will be carried out. If misconduct occurs in the areas of environmental affairs, social affairs, or corruption, it will lead to exclusion from the award of contracts.

"We are aware of our responsibility on further steps along the supply chain,” says Hiltrud D. Werner, Board Member for Integrity and Legal Affairs. “However, the demand for sustainability standards and integrity is actually only possible with our direct contractual partners. We use this lever as a matter of priority in the supply chain by requiring our contractual partners to pass on our requirements to their partners.”

The sustainability requirements are described in the Volkswagen Group's new "Code of Conduct for Business Partners", which is binding for all companies in the supply chain. It refers to respect for human rights, compliance with occupational health and safety, environmental protection and the fight against corruption.

The Volkswagen Group has been preparing its business partners for the Sustainability Rating for nearly a year with information, events and workshops. It is now being gradually introduced in the brands and the regions. For the future, it is planned to extend the Sustainability Rating to CO2 emissions in the supply chain, and to include them in the awarding process as part of the decarbonization process of the Volkswagen Group.


About Volkswagen Group of America, Inc.

Volkswagen Group of America, Inc. (VWGoA) is a wholly owned subsidiary of Volkswagen AG, one of the world’s leading automobile manufacturers and the largest carmaker in Europe. VWGoA operates a manufacturing plant in Chattanooga, Tennessee and houses the U.S. operations of a worldwide family of distinguished and exciting brands including Audi, Bentley, Bugatti, Lamborghini and Volkswagen, as well as VW Credit, Inc. Founded in 1955, the company's headquarters are in Herndon, Va. The company has 8,000 employees in the United States and sells its vehicles through a network of 1,000 dealers.