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Photographer: Nelson Ching/Bloomberg
Bloomberg BNA — Multinational corporations say they are increasingly taking on a regulatory role in their supply chains to improve performance on environment, health and safety (EHS) issues, especially in developing countries where government oversight can be weak.
Although EHS regulations are strong in some developing countries, including China, they can be difficult to enforce, as governments struggle to keep up with growth in manufacturing.
Multinational corporations have traditionally conducted facility audits to make sure their supply chains are complying with local regulations and their own supplier standards. But many facilities lack the technical skills and management expertise to meet those standards.
To fill the gap in local expertise, General Electric, Wal-Mart Stores Inc. and Hewlett-Packard Co. are providing more training and education programs to help suppliers learn how to manage a range of EHS issues, from energy and water use to fire safety, company officials told Bloomberg BNA. They said the companies are also implementing new tools to track their suppliers’ performance.