Our approach to social performance is based on understanding and minimising the potential impacts of our activities on communities and managing social risks to the business. We seek to respect human rights, engage meaningfully with stakeholders and make a positive difference to the social and economic development of the areas in which we operate.

Social performance is a critical component of the sustainability of Iluka’s activities across our entire business lifecycle. It is governed by the company’s HSEC management system. This includes the Group level Social Performance Standard and related procedures. These contain the following requirements:

  • the robust identification, management and monitoring of social impacts and risks;
  • meaningful engagement with stakeholders;
  • responsive management of grievances;
  • the sharing of benefits; and
  • where applicable, additional requirements pertaining to aspects such as human rights, local employment and procurement, cultural heritage management, resettlement and social monitoring.

lluka recognises that compliance with legislative requirements is a minimum standard that should be achieved while performing at or beyond these requirements. Our expanding global footprint in countries outside Australia has heightened our proactivity in identifying and addressing a broader range of social issues, risks and impacts. This is particularly relevant with the acquisition of Sierra Rutile and project development in Sri Lanka. The social context of these locations, and the nature of Iluka’s activities, has enhanced the materiality of issues such as human rights and project-induced displacement.

Social performance governance is led by our Communities team, part of the Sustainability group. In 2017, key areas of work for the Communities team included embedding Iluka’s new social performance standard and associated procedures and strengthening capability at sites to develop and monitor social management plans. An initial social performance gap assessment against the new standard was undertaken in 2017 to provide a roadmap for continual improvement.

Iluka recognises that the success of our business is linked to our relationships with our neighbours and stakeholders. We seek to engage early in open, inclusive and meaningful communication and incorporate stakeholder views into our decision-making processes, as stated in our HSEC Policy.

Relevant stakeholders and their interests are identified, analysed and mapped to inform impact and risk assessments and social management plans. All sites and projects are required to establish a process to ensure affected stakeholders receive relevant up-to-date information, are provided with opportunities to express their views on decisions that may affect them, and that these views are considered in decision-making processes.

Iluka monitors its operations and local environments for potential issues or matters of local concern. We ensure we have suitably trained site-based personnel, who are able to respond to stakeholder concerns, and, where required, engage with relevant authorities. We seek to build strong relationships with stakeholders and effectively manage the impact of our business activities on communities. Nevertheless, we recognise that complaints will occur from time to time.

In 2017 the Group level Grievance Management Procedure was updated in line with the United Nations “Protect, Respect and Remedy” Framework. The procedure sets minimum requirements that all sites must adhere to when developing their local grievance management process, with the aim of achieving the following key objectives:

  • external stakeholders are able to access a locally-appropriate process to raise grievances; and
  • grievances lodged are recorded, investigated and resolved in a timely manner.

We feel strongly that stakeholders should feel comfortable about contacting us to report any kind of feedback or conduct, and all complaints are taken seriously and are investigated. All grievances of a medium to high-level risk classification are reported through to the executive team and Board as part of the monthly Sustainability Performance Report. Grievance management training is provided to build capability and ensure grievance mechanisms are tailored and appropriate for each site and project.

Public complaints by region*




Sierra Rutile




All other Iluka sites




Total public complaints received




All complaints were classified as low level risk and were variable in nature.

In 2017 we continued to advance our human rights work program, developed in accordance with the UN Guiding Principles on Business and Human Rights. This is to ensure we appropriately examine potential human rights risks and impacts in relevant jurisdictions and to support responsible business growth.

Accordingly, this saw the integration of human rights in our Environmental, Social and Health Impact Assessments at Sierra Rutile and a social impact scoping study in Sri Lanka. Significant work was commenced to prepare for the proposed modern slavery legislation to be introduced by the Australian government.

Iluka’s Executive all undertook human rights training while topical training on labour, human rights and resettlement was provided to relevant members of the broader workforce.

Iluka seeks to avoid or minimise project-induced displacement in all its planning activities. However we anticipate project growth and expansion of our Sierra Rutile operation will lead to some displacement and resettlement over time.

As part of our Social Performance Standard, Iluka will be managing all project-induced displacement in alignment with the International Finance Corporation (IFC) Performance Standard 5: Land Acquisition and Involuntary Resettlement. This includes avoiding or minimising any adverse social and economic impacts from land acquisition or restrictions on land use and ensuring all affected people are able to improve, or at least restore, their livelihoods and standards of living once resettled.

Sierra Rutile has recently developed a Resettlement Policy Framework to govern all project induced displacement in Sierra Leone and has also established a Resettlement Management Unit, headed by an experienced Resettlement Manager.

In late 2017, we recommenced the Foinda village resettlement project to allow for mining of the areas below the current village footprint. This project is being undertaken in accordance with Iluka’s standards and good international industry practice and will be subject to independent monitoring.

Iluka acknowledges the special connection that Indigenous people have with land and we seek to work together to build constructive and respectful relationships. In addition to our social performance requirements, we are expanding our expertise to ensure development of an Indigenous Peoples strategy that respects the rights and interests of all Indigenous people.

At Iluka locations where cultural heritage is identified, sites are required to develop a Cultural Heritage Management Plan to ensure the protection of the sites and to meet regulatory requirements. This is especially important when our projects are located on land traditionally owned by, adjacent to, or under customary use by Indigenous people. In these instances specific engagement is undertaken.

Iluka currently has two agreements in place with Indigenous people for its Australian operations. Iluka’s Native Title Mining Agreement with the Far West Coast (FWC) Native Title holders has been in place since the commencement of operations at Jacinth-Ambrosia in South Australia. In Western Australia, Iluka has a voluntary agreement with the Yued People for our Cataby mineral sands project

Both agreements ensure we develop and maintain constructive and respectful relationships with traditional owners. They include activities such as training and business opportunities, employment, Aboriginal heritage protocol and cultural awareness training while also providing a forum for regular engagement.

During 2017, there were no incidents of violations involving the rights of Indigenous people.