Australia and New Zealand Banking Group Limited (ANZ) Holds Its Third Environment, Social and Governance (ESG) Market Briefing

Sep 14, 2020 4:00 AM ET
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September 14, 2020 - ANZ’s support for customers, stakeholders and the community throughout the COVID-19 crisis has been anchored to its purpose, strong governance and ESG principles.

Responding to the pandemic through an ESG lens

At the Bank’s third annual, dedicated ESG market briefing, ANZ Chief Executive Officer, Shayne Elliott focused the discussion on the ‘social’ aspects within ESG, including how the Bank’s purpose of ‘shaping a world where people and communities thrive’ is helping it navigate the pandemic.

Shayne Elliott said: 2020 has been a challenging year. Our customers and communities have faced significant uncertainty and loss, initially for some brought about by bushfires, and now the COVID-19 pandemic.”

“We have a clear sense of purpose at ANZ which guides our decisions about who we bank, how we behave and what we care about most.”

“Throughout, we’ve tried to make fair and appropriate decisions, seeking to balance the needs of all stakeholders.”

ANZ’s ability to adapt to the crisis demonstrates the success of its efforts in recent years to strengthen its governance processes.

“A key element to this was reviewing our response to the pandemic and deepening Board oversight of the business through an ESG ‘lens’,” said Mr Elliott.

ESG update

Mr Elliott also gave an update on how the Bank is performing against its ESG commitments, including those relating to carbon, and discussed other non-financial risks such as cyber security.

“We’re making good progress on our Environmental, Social and Governance (ESG) targets this year with over 80 per cent on track.”

“The management of climate-related risks and opportunities clearly remains a priority issue.”

“ANZ has a target to encourage and support 100 of our largest emitting customers in the energy, transport, buildings and food, beverage and agricultural sectors in their public commitments to transition to a net zero economy. We have already reviewed the carbon disclosures of more than 90 of these customers and engaged with more than 60 to support the strengthening of their plans,” said Mr Elliott.

COVID-19 customer support: statement of intent

At the briefing, Mr Elliott, also spoke about how ANZ has tried to make respectful, fair and appropriate decisions throughout the COVID-19 pandemic, as it seeks to balance the needs of all stakeholders.

To this end, he announced a ‘statement of intent’ that provides clarity on the Bank’s support measures for customers impacted by the pandemic.

A full version of this statement can be found here.

To access the briefing materials, including presentation slides, an audio recording and transcript of the event, visit https://www.anz.com/shareholder/centre/reporting/sustainability/

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