THE BOEING COMPANY | Review of China Business and ESG Commitments

5.04% votes in favour
AGM date
Previous AGM date
Proposal number
Resolution details
Company ticker
Resolution ask
Report on or disclose
ESG theme
  • Environment
  • Social
ESG sub-theme
  • GHG targets / emissions
  • Human rights
Type of vote
Shareholder proposal
Filer type
Company sector
Company HQ country
United States
Resolved clause
Shareholders request that the Board of Directors commission and publish a third-party review within the next year (at
reasonable cost, omitting proprietary information) of whether the Company’s activities and expenditures related to
doing business in China align with its ESG commitments. The Board of Directors should report on how it addresses the
risks presented by any misaligned activities and expenditures and the Company’s plans, if any, to mitigate these risks.
Supporting statement
The Boeing Company (“Company”) touts the virtues of its ESG initiatives, such as its commitment to reduce
operational greenhouse gas emissions 55 percent by 2030 below 2017’s, and to achieve 100 percent renewable
electricity by the end of the decade, as part of commercial aviation’s goal of “net zero” greenhouse gas emissions by
2050.1 The Company also insists human rights are protected throughout its operations,2 as outlined in its “Basic
Working Conditions and Human Rights in Boeing’s Supply Chain.”3
But the Company’s environmental promises and human rights commitments are belied by its cozy relationship with
China, a country that is controlled by the dictatorial and inhumane Chinese Communist Party (CCP).4
China is the world’s largest generator of greenhouse gases, emitting more than the entire U.S. and the developed
world combined.5 Its emissions have more than tripled over the last three decades.
And compared to many other corporations with significant operations in China, Boeing’s human rights accountability
measures are weak. Assessments of the potential for human trafficking or slavery are conducted internally, not by third
parties.6 The Company says it “does not conduct audits of suppliers to evaluate their compliance with company
standards for trafficking and slavery in supply chains,” and “does not verify through independent, unannounced
audits.” Also, the Company “does not require its suppliers to certify that the materials incorporated into the products
they deliver to Boeing comply with the laws regarding slavery and human trafficking of the country or countries in
which they are doing business.”
The Chinese government has an abhorrent human rights record, as evidenced by its abuses against the Muslim
Uyghurs and other ethnic minorities in Xinjiang, including forced labor programs, forced sterilizations, and torture.7
Chinese authorities perpetrate genocide and use emerging technologies to carry out discriminatory surveillance and
ethno-racial profiling measures designed to subjugate and exploit minority populations.8 Thus Boeing’s advisory for
employee whistleblowers to “report [workplace violations] through established channels,” with the promise that “no
retaliatory action will be tolerated” against them, is absurd.9
Doing business with China counters everything Boeing claims to stand for, especially with its shabby accountability
measures. It is therefore critical that the Board commission and publish a third-party review that includes expertise
from those who understand the dangers that China poses, to ensure the Company is not exposed to unacceptable
reputational, operational and financial risk.

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