Limit supply chain emissions

AKU's greenhouse gas accounting showed that over 70 percent of our overall emissions footprint lies in the supply chain, in particular pharmaceuticals, surgical supplies, and surgical and lab equipment. This proportion is not unusual in the healthcare sector, as studies in other parts of the world have shown.​

AKU recognises the wide network of suppliers we work with and acknowledges the differences between local and international suppliers and differences in sustainability awareness and initiatives. Over 20 percent of our spend is with suppliers who measure and report their emissions whilst setting targets for reducing emissions within their own operations.

Measuring progress in sustainable procurement

To reduce chain emissions rapidly and substantially, AKU is:

  • Setting engagement targets.

  • Updating policy and procedures.

  • Developing roll out to, and support for, suppli​ers to meet AKU’s level of ambition.

  • Informing our 5000+ suppliers our net zero commitment and supporting them to start their own sustainability journeys.

In accordance with AKDN Environment and Climate Commitment, AKU will, in the future, ​specify and preferentially purchase products and services with the lowest possible lifecycle carbon emissions. Furthermore, AKU will preferentially purchase from suppliers with credible and significant carbon reduction targets across their own operations and value chains.​

Supplier engagement workshops

In March 2023, AKU brought together 40 local manufacturers in Pakistan to participate in a workshop on ‘Partnering for Climate Action’. The Office of Environment and Sustainability introduced AKDN’s climate goals and shared achievements and plans on AKU’s environment agenda while the Group Purchasing Programs shared learnings on operational and supply chain emissions accounting. The workshop also included an interactive group activity where participants deliberated on the factors, required incentives and stakeholder landscape in order to implement sustainability in their own work. The workshop was attended by more than 70 company representatives including CEOs, CFOs and EHS specialists as well as colleagues from other AKDN institutions (Habib Bank Ltd, Aga Khan Foundation, and Aga Khan Health Service).

As part of a collaborative effort, another supplier workshop was organised in October 2023 which brought together the common suppliers of HBL and AKU. Its aim was to promote understanding about sustainability, specifically urging suppliers to measure and reduce their greenhouse gas emissions. 

Not only is mitigating climate change most urgent in this critical decade, but supporting a wider community to accelerate sustainability action in the LMIC context is a key responsibility for AKDN.