Environmental, Social and Governance (ESG)

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Our ESG achievements

Hang Seng ranks first in the list of Equileap Gender-Equal Companies among the local banks in Hong Kong in 2021/2022. We are also constituent of a variety of indices, including MSCI Pacific ex Japan SRI Index, FTSE4GOOD, Hong Kong Business Sustainability Index and Hang Seng Corporate Sustainability index.

For more details of Awards & Recognitions , please go to Useful links at the bottom of this page.

Board Statement

The Board takes overall responsibility for ESG matters and their integration into the Bank’s strategies. It guides the management and monitoring of ESG matters, which have been identified as relevant to the Bank by the Executive Committee based on the recommendation of the newly-formed ESG Steering Committee.

To be carbon neutral in our operations by 2030 is key among the new ESG targets that we set in 2021. This commitment makes us the first local bank in Hong Kong to lay down a concrete roadmap towards carbon neutrality and we are pleased to report that good progress has already been made in 2021.

Our ESG vision

Hang Seng Bank aspires to become a leading entity to drive ESG in the banking industry. To achieve this, we are stepping up the consideration and inclusion of ESG issues with respect to our products, services, operations and disclosures.

We are aware that we need to continue to broaden the variety of our products and services, as well as increase our contribution to tackling issues that require a global response. In particular, we shall focus on sustainable finance that addresses one out of many major and urgent challenges of climate change.

Our ESG Strategy

Hang Seng Bank is now more ESG-focused. Watch the video to learn more about our ESG implementation plan for 2021 and beyond.

You can read more about our sustainability news here: https://www.hangseng.com/en-hk/hangsengstories/community/

Our ESG key pillars

Our ambition is to achieve carbon-neutrality for our operations by 2030. And, to have 100% of our electricity come from renewable sources via our own renewable source and renewable energy certificates by 2030. We have established targets for electricity consumption, greenhouse gas emissions, water consumption, paper consumption, and waste diversion. In 2021, some initiatives were implemented at three core office buildings. For example, we installed intelligent building monitoring and rescheduled the provision of building facilities and air-conditioning facilities to reduce electricity consumption and installed faucet aerators and sensor taps to reduce water consumption.

We support our community’s transition to a low carbon economy with sustainable finance solutions and ESG-focused investment choices.

Our Green Financing Promotion Scheme, targeting small and medium-sized enterprises, encourages corporate customers to acquire environmentally friendly equipment that contributes to sustainable development. For corporate customers, we offer green loans and sustainability-linked loans to support their sustainability development. For retail and private banking customers, we offer green and ESG investment funds, bonds and equity-linked structured products via branches and e-Banking.

We have been practicing corporate social responsibility by investing more resources in our younger generation, help them to achieve shared goals.

In 2021, we offered internship opportunities to 232 university students to help them to gain practical experience, skills and knowledge needed for a successful career in banking. Besides, Hang Seng Youth Career Planning Scheme approved 97 business proposals from 2014 to 2021, of which 75% are still in operation and under regular monitoring and guidance of The Society of Rehabilitation and Crime Prevention. All applicants received start-up entrepreneurship training courses and tailor-made coaching to suit their specific needs.

We attach great importance to climate risk management. Adapting to the physical and transition risks and opportunities associated with climate change, we established a climate risk management framework that is aligned with our parent company HSBC, for identifying and mitigating such risks. Since 2021, we have incorporated climate risk considerations into our lending business. We also developed a Climate Change Management Roadmap in 2021 with four focus areas: governance, strategy, risk management, and metrics and targets.

We aim to earn recognition as an ESG leader from the community, investors and government bodies. We initiated and title-sponsored the Chamber of Hong Kong Listed Companies’ first ever "ESG and Green Finance Opportunities Forum 2021", which brought together corporates, regulators and sustainability professionals to discuss ESG best practices and the potential of green finance. We also continue to support WWF Hong Kong’s and Business Environment Council’s corporate membership programme.

We enhance our staff’s awareness and knowledge on ESG so they are equipped to help the Bank become an ESG leader. A number of staff members are trained as Green Ambassadors to support the implementation of our Environmental Policy. In 2021, we organised ESG webinars and workshops for our staff. We also organised a three-month Branch Energy Saving Competition in 2021 to increase staff awareness on energy savings and inspire actions to reduce carbon emissions.

We have implemented the internationally recognised standards for ESG disclosure and we are the first local bank in Hong Kong to sign up as a supporter of the Task Force on Climate-related Financial Disclosure (TCFD). We made the first attempt to publish climate-related disclosure information in the Environmental, Social and Governance Report 2021 with reference to the recommendations of the TCFD. In 2021, we obtained Hong Kong ESG Reporting Awards for our ESG disclosure, including Grand Award for the Best GRI Report and Grand Award for the Best ESG Report.

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