Human rights

Our commitment to respect human rights covers all our operations, including our employees, contractors, suppliers, and neighbouring communities.


While we respect and consider all human rights important, our highest priority human rights remain the primary focus of our work:

  • Health and safety
  • Fair employment conditions
  • Forced labour
  • Freedom of association
  • Non-discrimination and non-harassment
  • Land and natural resource rights acquisition and management
  • Grievance mechanisms
  • Children’s rights (relevant to the forest sector).

We continued to develop our human rights due diligence programme in 2019. As a first step, to strengthen our strategic focus, we mapped our Group function processes to identify development areas related to our highest priority human rights. Actions to address the findings are expected to be completed by the end of 2020.

In 2019, Stora Enso was one of the first companies to sign the WBCSD’s CEO Guide to Human Rights, in which leading companies in the field of human rights encourage their peers to take action.

How we work

Human rights risks are considered throughout Stora Enso's operations – for example in investment decisions, mergers, acquisitions, and divestments.

Stora Enso's human rights due diligence procedures include:

  • Environmental and Social Impact Assessments (ESIAs)
  • Community consultations
  • Appropriate grievance and remediation mechanisms
  • Accountability through transparent reporting  

Our policies

Human rights are integrated into our Sustainability Agenda, which is aligned with the ten principles of the UN Global Compact. Relevant Stora Enso policies on human rights include:

Opportunities and challenges

Many of the human rights challenges we face are deeply rooted in local society and can only be effectively addressed through a long-term commitment and close cooperation with global and local stakeholders. The UN Guiding Principles on Business and Human Rights emphasise that companies have an ongoing responsibility to respect human rights, even where government actions and regulatory frameworks are inadequate. Compliance with these principles requires companies to conduct human rights due diligence procedures to identify, assess, and remedy the human rights risks and impacts of their operations, products, and services. In addition, new legislation is being explored and developed in numerous countries to address human rights due diligence by companies.