Material topics

Determining material topics

GRI 102–40, 102–42

To identify topics that are relevant for stakeholders, Russian Railways monitors the global sustainable development agenda through the lens of the goals and objectives set out in the UN General Assembly’s “Transforming our world: the 2030 Agenda for Sustainable Development” action plan, as well as the list of tasks and national projects in the Russian President’s Order No. 204 On National Goals and Strategic Objectives of the Russian Federation through 2024 dated 7 May 2018.

To really home in on the most important topics, we also analyse the activities of a wide range of investors, partners, and suppliers as they relate to the priority development areas of the Russian transport industry. We pay special attention to assessing risks and opportunities that have a bearing on the Russian Railways Group’s development through 2030.

By continually interacting with many stakeholders throughout the reporting period, we are able to arrive at a pool of issues that are key to ensuring the Company’s sustainable development. When preparing the 2021 Report, we assessed the relevance of the previous reporting period’s material topics in an online survey among the Russian Railways management.

Materiality assessment

GRI 102-44, 102-47

The survey identified topics that had a significant impact on the Company’s performance in the reporting year. The following projects have been deemed the most significant for the purposes of the Sustainable Development Report 2021:

  • Implementation of the Year of the Environment activities at Russian Railways
  • Implementation of a number of climate-related projects
  • Commissioning of the Baikalsky Tunnel
  • Delivery against targets to improve labour productivity
  • Introduction of the digital service for monitoring smart contracts
  • Implementation of the Eurasian Agroexpress project on the development of accelerated container transportation of agricultural and food products by rail

The material topics that were disclosed in the 2020 report have been ranked based on their relevance in the 2021 reporting year
High priority:

  • Promotion of innovations and efficiency improvement
  • Higher quality and responsible provision of services
  • HR management approach
  • Employee training and development
  • Terms of employment, employee rights (collective bargaining agreements)
  • Environmental impact management
  • Air pollutant emissions
  • Noise and vibration
  • Energy efficiency improvement
  • Utilisation of renewable energy sources
  • Personnel structure
  • Diversity, equity, and inclusion
  • Health, Safety and Environment (HSE) management approach
  • Emergency preparedness and railway safety
  • Waste management
  • Climate impact management
  • Respect for human rights

Medium priority:

  • Business ethics and information security
  • Corporate governance
  • Workplace safety
  • GHG emissions reduction
  • Supplier and contractor relationship management
  • Charity
  • Biodiversity

Low priority:

  • The spread of COVID-19
  • Local community relations
  • Contribution to local communities
  • Interaction with suppliers on social and environmental matters
  • Water consumption
  • Interaction with local suppliers