The Companies Act 1985 requires the company to record donations made by it for charitable purposes in the United Kingdom. During the year under review, the aggregate amount of these donations was US$474,000. This was comprised of the following donations: US$322,000 to charities supporting the victims of the Asian Tsunami crisis, US$114,000 in support of Addaction, the drug and alcohol education charity and US$38,000 in scholarships for students from China and South Africa to study in the United Kingdom.
In addition, the group contributed over US$16.4 million across its worldwide operations through its corporate social investment programmes. More information on these programmes is in the corporate accountability report.
Whilst it remains the group’s policy that political donations are only made by exception and in accordance with local laws, after careful consideration, the following political donations were sanctioned during the year.
During the year under review, which coincided with the Federal election in the USA, Miller Brewing Company made contributions to the campaigns and office running costs of individual elected officials and candidates who indicated their support for the beer industry, in accordance with all relevant laws. Political donations made by businesses in the USA are an accepted part of the socio-political environment. The contributions amounted to US$1.074 million in aggregate.
The group’s operations in Central America sold soft drinks to the two major political parties in connection with elections taking place during the year. The sales were made at cost price, which resulted in a discount of US$1,400 on retail value. In addition, the group provided notebooks and other materials for use in underprivileged schools following a request from a national political party in Honduras. The total value of these materials was US$1,184.
The board has reaffirmed the group’s policy not to make donations to political parties in the European Union.
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