What is the current situation with BNP Paribas corporate philanthropy?
MICHEL PÉBEREAU: Today, it is an essential way of res- ponding to the challenges faced by the world. Our proactivity in response to the recent COVID-19 health crisis has proven this. We were able to rapidly implement an extensive action plan, on an international scale, targeting the health sector - hospitals and re- search - solidarity and continued access to education, by deploying the full range of resources at our disposal, which includes financial and in-kind donations, as well as skills-based sponsorship. The in- crease in investment in global philanthropy in 2019, which we will be collecting data on each year, reflects the Group s commitment to serving the common good, directly in line with our management s corporate commitment objectives. The value of our Foundation s balance sheets, which now include the very active BNP Paribas India Foundation, is also on the increase. In addition to the funds set aside, a number of enriching and diverse initiatives are being implemented in the many countries where BNP Paribas operates. These programmes illustrate the level of our involvement in life on a local level, facilitating dialogue between our stakeholders, and they are a source of pride for our employees, who actively participate in the voluntary initiatives promoted by the company.
What were the highlights of your philanthropic initiatives in 2019?
JEAN-JACQUES GORON: In the cultural sector, thanks to our support, many artistic works have been created in the fields of jazz, dance and contemporary circus arts. We are one of the few patrons of these art forms, for which the sky is the limit. The piece created by Canadian Choreographer, Crystal Pite, to mark the 350th anniversary of the Paris Opera, is a perfect example of this. In terms of solidarity, we have extended our refugee integration programme to the United Kingdom and Switzerland. It now involves 11 coun-
tries and numerous stakeholders, making BNP Paribas one of the most fully committed companies in this field. Finally, with regard to our environmental actions, we are very proud of having successfully launched 9 new research programmes, through our call for Climate Change and Biodiversity projects.
Why have you expanded your support to include biodiversity research?
M.P.: As some of the work that we have supported has already demonstrated, climate change is a major factor in the erosion of biodiversity. Yet biodiversity is essential for the natural development of all the ecosystems on our planet. Conversely, the destruction of biodiversity is accelerating certain mechanisms as- sociated with climate change The urgency of these issues therefore drove us to expand the scope of our programme.
what are the challenges for the future?
J.-J.G.: Over the past 35 years, the Group s approach to corporate philanthropy has changed considerably. As always, we must keep up-to-date with breaking news and be prepared to take action. That is why we decided to support the restoration of Notre- Dame de Paris in 2019, a world heritage site, and match the dona- tions made by many of our employees. In addition to the advantages for beneficiaries, patronage is a great way of building relationships between various stakeholders who have everything to gain from mutual collaboration. This illustrates the importance of supporting our partners.
philanthropy, a tool for the future
M I C H E L P É B E R E A U Honorary Chairman of BNP Paribas Chairman of the BNP Paribas Foundation
J E A N - J A C Q U E S G O R O N Head of Group Philanthropy General Delegate of the BNP Paribas Foundation
CORPORATE PHILANTHROPY 2019 ACTIVITY REPORT 4