NUS and PwC Jointly Release Sustainability Counts II, affirming Fosun International’s leading standard in ESG disclosure
HONG KONG, July 11, 2023 /PRNewswire/ — The National University of Singapore (NUS) Centre for Governance and Sustainability (CGS) and PricewaterhouseCoopers (PwC) Singapore recently jointly released Sustainability Counts II (the “Report”). Based on the principles of Global Reporting Initiative (GRI) and the Task Force on Climate-Related Financial Disclosures (TCFD), the study focuses on the analysis of the sustainability reporting attributes of the top 50-listed companies by market capitalization across 14 countries and regions across Asia Pacific in 2021 and 2022, involving 700 listed companies spanning 11 industries. Fosun International Limited (HKEx stock code: 00656, “Fosun International” or “Fosun”) is one of the Hong Kong-listed companies studied. The Report shares Fosun International’s active response to the challenges of ESG disclosure, and management cases in ESG disclosure, promotion of sustainable development and corporate responsibility.
As demand for sustainability reporting expands across Asia Pacific, companies have a long way to go in turning sustainability strategies into practical actions. Sustainability Counts II analyzes the state of sustainability reporting in Asia Pacific, elaborating on sustainability reporting requirements globally and across Asia Pacific, and providing insights on the journey to date.
Here are three key findings from the study on the state of sustainability reporting in Asia Pacific:
- The Report points out that conducting external assurance would help companies build more trust with stakeholders and organizations. Sustainability external assurance in Asia Pacific remains poor. Currently, only 49% of companies studied have carried out external assurance, which remains low as compared to the global average.
- The GRI framework, adopted by 81% of companies studied, continues to be the dominant sustainability reporting standard in Asia Pacific. With the International Sustainability Standards Board (ISSB) coming into effect in June 2023, eyes are now on how companies will adopt the new standard to prepare sustainability reports. In addition, there is a 21% increase in use of the TCFD framework to 57% amongst companies. The disclosures of climate-related risks and opportunities reached 88%. 89% of companies have carried out climate scenario analysis.
- With 80% of companies studied disclosing their emissions, the measurement of Scope 1 and 2 emissions is reaching maturity. However, companies need to place an added effort for better transparency and accuracy of the measurement of their Scope 3 emissions.
The Report summarizes the key highlights of Fosun International in the field of ESG, and recognizes Fosun’s continuous efforts in the field of ESG over the years, continuously strengthening sustainable development management, and actively implementing and monitoring Fosun’s ESG strategies and goals. The Report also acknowledges Fosun’s industry leadership in ESG disclosure, promotion of sustainable development and corporate responsibility.
Fosun has issued the first TCFD Report this year, calling on all sectors to promote carbon neutrality
In 2023, Fosun ushered in the “third year” after announcing its “Carbon Neutrality Goal”. Fosun has made a commitment to society – “strive to peak carbon emissions by 2028 and achieve carbon neutrality by 2050” and has formulated effective strategies for climate change mitigation and adaptation to align with the 1.5°C temperature control target set in the Paris Agreement. In order to further push forward the “dual carbon” goals of Fosun, the Group has established a Carbon Neutrality Committee and a Carbon Neutrality Working Group to actively promote further implementation and enforcement of carbon-neutral management across the Group. In April 2023, Fosun issued its first TCFD report, demonstrating its commitment of climate action to the international community.
The Report mentions that in response to climate change, Fosun International recognizes that it is critical to identify climate-related risks and opportunities, as well as the potential impact on its business, strategic and financial planning. At the same time, Fosun International has also improved the transparency and accuracy of the monitoring and reporting of other indirect greenhouse gas (GHG) emissions (Scope 3), and continued to disclose, track and analyze the information of Scope 3 GHG emissions. Fosun incorporated these analyses into the TCFD report issued this year, with a view to ultimately cultivate a capability to address climate issues in the long term, enhance climate resilience and call on all departments to work together, thereby calling on all sectors to work together to promote carbon neutrality.
Fosun has obtained external assurance from an independent organization, aiming to build more trust
For ESG disclosure and sustainability reporting, the accuracy of information and data is very important as investors and stakeholders are more convinced by quantifiable results that are consistent, comparable and audited. A good report should provide a clear articulation of the strategic integration of ESG into the company’s corporate culture, policies, governance, and operations. In order to build investors’ and stakeholders’ confidence and trust in Fosun’s sustainability reporting, Fosun has carried out independent external assurance on sustainability reporting in 2022 in accordance with the AA1000 Assurance Standard (AA1000AS), helping stakeholders understand the Group’s key sustainability risks and monitor Fosun’s progress against goals and targets.
Built a comprehensive mechanism for ESG management and linked ESG performance with the performance appraisal of the Board
Fosun has always emphasized that corporate leaders should attach importance to ESG governance and establish an accountability system. Fosun has set up an ESG Board Committee under the Board of Directors (the “Board”) to assist the Board in guiding and overseeing the Group’s ESG development and implementation. At the management and decision-making level, Fosun has established an ESG Executive Committee under the management to provide decision support for the implementation of ESG strategies. At the implementation level, the Group has also set up an ESG Management Committee and an ESG Working Group to implement ESG strategies and related actions and ensure the establishment of appropriate and effective ESG risk management and internal control system.
In order to ensure the smooth and continuous progress of ESG work, Fosun has established a top-down and long-term mechanism for ESG improvement. Fosun includes ESG management performance as an evaluation factor in the Executive Directors’ performance assessment and remuneration assessment. With this mechanism, the Group and its member companies can deeply incorporate ESG into the operations and management progressively.
The Report quoted Angel Sze, Fosun Global Partner and Company Secretary & Head of the ESG Management Committee of Fosun International Limited, as saying, “Placing ESG as a priority is important in fostering a culture where people are committed to ESG efforts. We have established an ESG Management Committee and an ESG Working Group to share best practices and build open communication channels across companies within the Group.”
“One of the key challenges we face is the need to consider and implement different reporting requirements as we have presences in various countries/regions such as China, US, UK, and Europe. Building up ESG capability and upskilling of employees are critical to ensure that employees are kept up to date with the latest local and global sustainability reporting developments. We implemented various sustainability-related initiatives, such as launching ESG culture week and organising trainings and seminars to improve our ESG capabilities. We also organised ESG global network sessions with our more advanced counterparts in Europe and UK, and these exchanges helped us understand the latest ESG reporting trends globally and enable cross-sharing opportunities.”
Benchmark against the international standard to build more trust with stakeholders
The Report quoted Angel Sze as saying, “Sustainability reporting is not just a box-ticking exercise. In assessing and ranking our material ESG issues, it is important to engage our key stakeholders actively to understand their concerns, priorities and expectations on ESG issues as well as their views on our performance. Having transparent disclosures in our sustainability report is useful in helping stakeholders understand our key sustainability risks and monitor our progress against goals and targets.”
With a growing demand by stakeholders for more transparent and comparable reporting on companies’ sustainability information, Fosun not only published the ESG Report in accordance with the Environmental, Social and Governance Reporting Guide in Appendix 27 to the Listing Rules of Hong Kong Stock Exchange, but also prepared the ESG Report with reference to the GRI Sustainability Reporting Standards (GRI Standards) and disclosed its climate-related financial risks voluntarily based on the TCFD recommendations.
In order to strengthen sustainable development management and benchmark against the international standard, Fosun also joined the United Nations (UN) Global Compact in 2014, fully supporting the ten principles of the UN Global Compact and continuously promoting their close integration with its own ESG strategies and actively engaging its member companies in the implementation of ESG strategies. Fosun’s ESG Report was prepared with reference to sustainable development frameworks such as the UN Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) to integrate SDGs into Fosun’s sustainable development and management and information disclosure of its business operations. In addition, Fosun’s ESG Report was audited and assured by SGS, an independent third-party and internationally recognized verification company, to enhance the confidence of stakeholders in the report disclosed.
Fosun’s remarkable ESG performance has been widely recognized by the international market
In 2022, Fosun achieved remarkable ESG performance. It received an AA MSCI ESG Rating and was the only conglomerate in Greater China with such an AA rating, and was selected as a constituent of the MSCI CHINA ESG LEADERS 10-40 Index again. Fosun also received a rating of A in the Hang Seng Sustainability Index and has been selected as a constituent stock of the Hang Seng ESG 50 Index for two consecutive years and a constituent stock of the Hang Seng Corporate Sustainability Benchmark Index for three consecutive years; it was selected as one of the constituents of FTSE4Good Index Series for the first time; its S&P CSA ESG score has risen significantly and outperformed 91% of its global peers. Recently, Fosun was included in S&P Global’s Sustainability Yearbook 2023 (China Edition) and recognized as an “Industry Mover” by S&P Global.
Fosun was founded in 1992. After more than 30 years of development, Fosun has become a global innovation-driven consumer group. Adhering to the mission of creating happier lives for families worldwide, Fosun is committed to creating a global happiness ecosystem fulfilling the needs of one billion families in health, happiness and wealth. In 2007, Fosun International Limited was listed on the main board of the Hong Kong Stock Exchange (stock code: 00656.HK). As of 31 December 2022, Fosun International’s total assets amounted to RMB823.1 billion; it received an AA MSCI ESG rating and was the only conglomerate in Greater China with such rating.
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