Respect for human rights

Toyota Tsusho Group Human Rights Policy

This policy was reported to the Board of Directors of Toyota Tsusho Corporation on March 29, 2022.

Policy and basic concept

Toyota Tsusho Group's Corporate Philosophy is "Living and prospering together with people, society and the globe, we aim to be a value-generating corporation that contributes to creation of a prosperous society", and we are striving to solve social issues through our business activities.

As "Be the Right ONE," namely, to be an irreplaceable and unique presence for partners and stakeholders, forms our "Ideal Image" as part of our Global Vision, we recognize that it is an extremely important responsibility to understand the human rights issues of countries and regions in which we operate and undertake appropriate actions. We list our idea to "Respect human rights, and actively develop people who will contribute to society by nurturing them and giving them opportunities to apply their skills." as one of our Key Sustainability Issues (Materiality).

Toyota Tsusho Group positions this policy as its highest level policy regarding human rights.

  1. 1 Our stance on international norms and laws

    We believe that respect for human rights in accordance with international standards forms the foundation of our business worldwide, and consequently, we respect human rights based on the United Nations International Bill of Human Rights, including the "Universal Declaration of Human Rights" and the "Guiding Principles on Business and Human Rights."

    Our Behavioral Guidelines stipulate that we "Will respect people and strive to create an engaging workplace," as good corporate citizens and our Global Code of Conduct & Ethics (COCE) specifies our respect for human rights and stresses our consideration for human rights.

    We particularly strive to ensure that there is no discrimination against gender, age, nationality, race, skin color, ethnicity, religion, sexual orientation, disabilities, political views, or other factors in our workplaces, to establish policies to prohibit forced labor, child labor and unreasonably low wage labor, to eliminate inadequate employment and pay above the minimum wage in compliance with labor laws and regulations of countries in which we operate and to protect the right to privacy and freedom of expression of all individuals with whom we engage in the course of our company activities.

  2. 2Scope of application

    This policy applies to all officers and employees. We also expect all of our business partners, including suppliers, to understand and comply with this policy.

  3. 3Human rights due diligence

    We will strive to identify and prevent or mitigate any adverse impacts on human rights in our business through our human rights due diligence mechanisms.

  4. 4Remediation and remedy

    If we discover that our business activities have caused or are having an adverse impact on human rights, we will work to remediate or remedy them through appropriate procedures and dialog.

  5. 5Grievance mechanism

    We will endeavor to establish a reporting and grievance system to appropriately understand and respond to all human rights issues affecting our officers and employees or otherwise related to our business.

  6. 6Education

    We will provide appropriate education and training to officers and employees so that they are familiar and comply with this policy. Moreover, we will include this policy in our guidelines and other necessary procedures so as to firmly establish it in our business activities.

  7. 7Progress confirmation and information disclosure

    We will persistently review our efforts to respect human rights, track progress and disclose our findings in a timely manner through our website, etc.

  8. 8Dialog / discussion with stakeholders

    We will endeavor to consult with third-party organizations with human rights expertise regarding any adverse impact on human rights and engage in dialog and discussions with relevant stakeholders.

Formulated in January 2020
Revised in March 2022

President & CEO
Ichiro Kashitani

Initiative for specific issues
Rights of children
We believe that the human rights of children-who will lead future generations-require particular consideration. To this end, we endorse children's rights-related treaties championed by international organizations and support UNICEF's "Children's Rights and Business Principles."
Rights of indigenous peoples
We recognize the unique culture and history of indigenous people in our business activities in the countries and regions where they reside. Further, we shall consider the rights of indigenous peoples stipulated in the laws and regulations of such countries and regions as well as in international norms, such as "United Nations Declaration on the Rights of Indigenous Peoples."
Our stance on security firm appointment
We recognize that the use of weapons in security operations carries a potential risk of human rights abuse. Accordingly, we will endeavor to respect human rights by supporting the laws and norms of countries and regions in which we conduct business, as well as related international agreements, when appointing security organizations and other entities as part of our business activities.
Prevention of modern slavery
We will endeavor to undertake measures to prevent the influence of modern slavery, such as forced labor and human trafficking, in our business activities.

Respect for Human Rights in COCE

Toyota Tsusho refers to its respect for human rights in Article 9 of its Global Code of Conduct & Ethics (COCE), which specifies items described in our Behavioral Guidelines. We issue the COCE Booklet with the president's message in various languages (currently, 23 languages) and have made it available on our intranet so that it can be accessed by all employees around the world. We seek to ensure thorough awareness about respect for human rights by obtaining, through the COCE global network, a globally common pledge from both Toyota Tsusho Group officers and employees around the world to follow the COCE.

Booklet of Global Code of Conduct & Ethics (COCE)

The booklet provides behavioral guidelines regarding the 10 creeds of the Global Code of Conduct & Ethics (COCE) in greater detail.


At Toyota Tsusho and the Toyota Tsusho Group, the Global Human Resources Department routinely undertakes human rights-related initiatives under the CHRO(Chief Human Resources Officer) as the person in charge of the department managing these (the Global Human Resources Department), following the Toyota Tsusho Group Human Rights Policy and the COCE. Our records of action and progress concerning respect for human rights are reported to the Sustainability Management Committee for discussing future initiatives. Deliberations of the Sustainability Management Committee are regularly reported to and discussed with the Board of Directors to ensure a system of proper supervision by the Board of Directors.

We are aiming to strengthen our efforts to realize a sustainable society from a long-term perspective based on the three viewpoints of ESG (environment, society, and governance). To this end, we have appointed sustainability officers in each sales division and overseas region, and are promoting respect for human rights and other sustainability-related initiatives. These initiatives have been consolidated into our “Check10”(consolidated-based activities to assess, analyze, and alleviate risks) since the current fiscal year to promote Check10 activities by persons in charge at our consolidated subsidiaries. The Integrated Risk Management Committee (chaired by the CFO) manages the Check10 activities and reports them to the Board of Directors as appropriate.

Human Rights Due Diligence

Toyota Tsusho revised its Human Rights Policy and Behavioral Guidelines in March 2022 in response to their growing importance in society. Based on the revised policy, we assessed our human rights risks. Having identified high risk domains, we promote a human rights due diligence process by conducting questionnaires and on-site investigations, among other measures, to alleviate these risks.

Human rights due diligence process

Initiatives for consolidated subsidiaries

Toyota Tsusho has initiated human rights due diligence efforts for all of its consolidated subsidiaries from the fiscal year ended March 31, 2022, to address human rights risks that impact society through its business activities.

During the fiscal year ended March 31, 2022, considering the advice of internal and external experts, we analyzed human rights risks from the three perspectives of business nature (business sector), location (country), and products handled by all of the consolidated subsidiaries worldwide. As a result, we identified 93 companies that required prioritized risk assessment. Since the fiscal year ended March 31, 2023, the series of activities have been integrated into the Check10 activities, consolidated-based risk assessment, analysis, and alleviation, to establish a structure for annual human rights risk assessment with all consolidated subsidiaries. We reported the results to the Integrated Risk Management Committee, established for evaluating the status of risk management at a global level, expanding our risk assessment structure to include company-wide monitoring.

Considering the advice of internal and external experts, as well as business-specific issues, we conducted human rights risks assessment centering on four human right issues, Forced Labor, Child Labor, Discrimination, and Freedom of Association and Collective Bargaining Rights. Using questionnaire slips, we assessed the status of management of human rights risks concerning occupational health and safety, pay, working hours, among others.

The process did not identify any human rights issue that might immediately emerge, nevertheless, we will continue and further strengthen our initiatives to reduce human rights risks. (During the fiscal year ended March 31, 2022, the human rights investigations identified two companies for which further investigation was required. Using interviews accompanied by third-party observers, we checked the actual status at the two companies and did not find any human rights issue that might emerge).

When an event occurs that negatively impacts on human rights or involvement in such an event is identified, we undertake corrective and relief actions through appropriate procedures and dialogues.

We report the status of this process and assessment results to the Sustainability Management Committee.

In addition to human rights risks assessment of our existing businesses, we have also introduced preliminary assessment of human rights measures to the investment screening process for companies that are to become our consolidated subsidiaries through merger, acquisition, or takeover.

Furthermore, we started an annual investigation on foreign technical interns with domestic consolidated subsidiaries from the fiscal year ended March 31, 2023 to understand their acceptance status and supervising organizations. In May 2023, we joined the Collaborative Program for Companies Responsibly Hosting Foreign Migrant Workers, organized by JP-MIRAI, aiming to gain information and exchange opinions with experts.

Initiatives for the supply chains

We have been conducting human rights due diligence for human rights risks in the supply chains since the beginning of the fiscal year ending March 31, 2024. We analyze human rights risks from the three perspectives of business nature (business sector), location (country), and product related, as we do for our consolidated subsidiaries, utilizing international indicators and tools. We will conduct questionnaires and on-site audits as necessary for suppliers that are identified as high risk. Through these efforts, we will identify negative human rights impacts and work to prevent or mitigate them.

Internal whisleblowing system

Toyota Tsusho accepts consultation and whistleblowing mainly through five consultation desks.

Whistleblowing system Available to
will do. Employees of Toyota Tsusho and domestic consolidated subsidiaries
SPEAK UP Employees of Toyota Tsusho and all consolidated subsidiaries
Harassment Consultation Desk Employees of Toyota Tsusho
JaCER Grievance Platform Any stakeholder in the supply chain
Contact disclosed on the website All stakeholders including business partners, suppliers, local community residents, employees of Toyota Tsusho and domestic and overseas consolidated subsidiaries

The Global Human Resources Department promptly address consultation and whistleblowing to the whistleblowing system listed above as well as those to superiors or the Administrative Unit by contacting and interviewing the person(s) concerned. When violations of our award and punishment rules are identified, we consider discipline in accordance with the rules.
We have been implementing preventive measures, such as training to raise employees’ awareness on human rights and labor affairs, with the aim of reducing human rights risks.

During the fiscal year ended March 31, 2023, we received 17 consultations or reports relating to human rights or the workplace environment (see the table below for the breakdown) mainly through the whistleblowing system. We contacted and interviewed all the stakeholders in the 17 cases to investigate the actual conditions. As a result, one case was confirmed as violation of conduct, and disciplinary action was taken in accordance with the Award and Disciplinary Rules. In addition to an issuance of a disciplinary order to the person(s) concerned, we explained our whistleblowing rules to the manager of the department concerned to re-affirm their importance. We will continue to take appropriate measures for consultation and whistleblowing in the future.

Breakdown of consultation and whistleblowing relating to human rights and labor affairs

Fiscal year ended March 31, 2021 Fiscal year ended March 31, 2022 Fiscal year ended March 31, 2023
Harassment 10 5 12
Workplace environment 3 5 5
・Whistleblowing system (will do./SPEAK UP)

In addition to “will do.,” established for employees in Japan in 2002, we established “SPEAK UP,” a multilingual consultation desk handling more than 150 languages, at a specialized external organization in November 2017 to promote further globalization and reinforce anonymity and confidentiality. With these efforts, we have maintained a whistleblowing system that facilitates easier consultation or whistleblowing by stakeholders concerning COCE violations, including all forms of corruption and human rights violations.

・Harassment Consultation Desk

Toyota Tsusho has set up a Harassment Consultation Desk for consultations on and reporting of sexual harassment, abuses of authority, discriminatory expressions, and other human rights-related issues occurring in the workplace. The desk conducts the actual investigation after drawing a conclusion on its necessity, so as to prevent retaliation against the informants by securing anonymity and confidentiality, then notifies the findings to them as appropriate.

・Contact via the website

We have established a contact window on the company’s website to accept inquiries concerning human rights from stakeholders such as consumers, community, supplyers....

Related Links

Training and awareness activities

The Global Human Resources Department is primarily responsible for employee training and activities to raise their human rights awareness.
We offer an e-learning course on global trends on human rights and our Group’s Basic Policy for Human Rights to employees of Toyota Tsusho and domestic consolidated subsidiaries as a compliance activity held during the Business Ethics Month, held every October. We also held study sessions on human rights for human rights officers at our consolidated subsidiaries with global operations.

Moreover, we regularly exchange information with external experts to enhance our knowledge on human rights and to understand the latest trends in international situations and legislation and changes in expectations of companies. In 2022, we invited international lawyers knowledgeable in human rights to exchange opinions with the CHRO and general managers of relevant in-house departments. In 2023, we visited companies engaging in advanced human rights initiatives to gather information.

We have also introduced Practical Harassment Training for our employees in managerial positions with the aim of raising their awareness of appropriate labor management. Participants are trained using detailed case studies, whereby they gain knowledge on trends in and solutions to harassment incidents, such as how to handle subordinates’ requests for advice on harassment. Our human rights awareness raising activities are provided not only to Toyota Tsusho employees but also to those at affiliated companies.

Fair employment

When hiring employees, we make fair decisions based solely on whether an individual has the abilities and qualities matching the needs of Toyota Tsusho. Differences based on gender, age, nationality, disabilities, and other factors are not considered during this process.We also provide training for hiring staff and others involved in the hiring process, while consulting government organizations and attorneys when necessary to ensure our hiring is free of discrimination or prejudice.

Measures to Eliminate human rights violations such as Child Labor and Forced Labor

As part of COCE, we pledge not to participate in child labor, human trafficking, and other forms of forced labor. In order to prevent child labor, for example, we have made age-verification via official identification a compulsory part of our recruitment processes.

For human rights violation and all forms of corruption-including those outlined above-we have launched an external reporting line that maintains anonymity and confidentiality with multilingual support in more than 150 languages; in this way, we are establishing systems that enable us to respond appropriately to information provided by parties.

Related Links

Equal pay for equal work

We have applied Toyota Tsusho Group Human Rights Policy and Supply Chain CSR Behavioral Guidelines worldwide, and asked each Group company is creating compensation structures compliant with local laws in accordance with the policy and guidelines. In Japan, we established the "Human Resources Meeting" and announced to human resources personnel at domestic Group companies, that we will provide equal pay for equal work in accordance with the law. Toyota Tsusho complies with the statutory minimum wage and applies compensation systems that are in uniformity across gender for the same qualifications and same work duties.