The Bridgestone Group’s commitment to ethics, compliance and integrity helps it continuously achieve its mission of Serving Society with Superior Quality and supports its goal of meeting the Group’s global tax obligations. The Group’s Code of Conduct provides us with practical guidance on how to act ethically and with integrity. As the Global CEO stated in his message that accompanied the updated Code of Conduct in 2022, "whatever you do at Bridgestone, do it with integrity and let our Code guide you, always.”
This mission is important as the tax we pay is under increasing scrutiny. In working toward becoming a sustainable solutions company, the global and regional tax policies and compliance programs the Group develops must adapt and evolve to the changing business environment and regulatory landscapes.
The Group’s global tax governance program consists of a blend of global and regionally based initiatives. It balances global consistency with the flexibility needed to effectively address regional and even local obligations that can vary significantly due to the wide range of Group operations and the variety of geographic, legal and regulatory environments in which the Group operates. Whether at the local, regional, or global level, initiatives are guided by the Group’s core values and principles and are united under a common framework.
Tax is a key focus area for Bridgestone, the communities in which we operate, and other stakeholders.
The tax we pay is an important part of our broader economic and social impact and is key to the development of the communities in which we operate. We regard it as a cornerstone of our commitment to grow in a sustainable, socially responsible way.
The Bridgestone Essence Framework and the Bridgestone E8 Commitment are at the core of the enterprise, serving as a guide for the way we intend to do business – establishing the expected engagement of our teammates worldwide and the filters through which we see the world and inform our decisions. Bridgestone believes delivering on its commitment to operating with integrity, transparency, and high ethical standards is critical to meeting stakeholders’ expectations.
To drive consistency throughout our organization, the Group began building a global tax governance framework in 2017 by introducing a Global Tax Policy to employees responsible for corporate taxes. The Group is evolving its global tax governance structure by committing to implementing a sustainable tax strategy based upon the following pillars:
- Transparency ⏤ disclose tax information about business operations pursuant to existing legal and regulatory obligations, while seeking constructive relationships with regulatory authorities. Strive to disclose relevant tax information in support of the sustainable Tax mission.
- Compliance ⏤ comply with applicable legal and regulatory requirements in the jurisdictions in which it operates, paying the tax properly due under a reasonable interpretation of the law.
- Corporate Value ⏤ fulfill stakeholder responsibilities to create and protect corporate value by seeking tax efficiencies driven by business operations and ensuring income is properly reflected in the jurisdictions contributing to the value creation.
- Risk Management ⏤ leverage a robust tax risk framework which addresses policy, governance, organization, compliance, reporting, and risk assessment.
- People ⏤ invest in the development of teammates to ensure they have the skills, technical expertise, and business knowledge necessary to meet its tax obligations.
Road to improving our global sustainable tax strategy
The Global Finance Committee (GFC) has established 3 task forces aimed at improving and standardizing our global sustainable tax strategy. The progress of each task force is regularly reported to the GFC.
- Corporate tax governance ⏤ effectively integrating tax into core corporate governance activities.
- Global tax policy ⏤ developing and implementing global tax policies in support of ethical decision-making and responsible business practices.
- ESG tax reporting ⏤ developing a comprehensive tax transparency framework.