Posted inESG

Eastspring publishes responsible investment report

The Asia-based asset manager revealed it carried out a total of 744 engagements last year.

Eastspring Investments, the Asia-based asset management arm of Prudential, has published its 2022 responsible investment report, which details the firm’s achievements in the realm of responsible investment.

Last year, Eastspring carried out a total of 744 engagements, 38% of which were governance, 38% of which were environmental and 24% of which were social. The top six markets Eastspring engaged in were China (126), Taiwan (95), India (59), Malaysia (56), Hong Kong (43) and the US (42).

In 2021, Prudential set a target to engage with the companies responsible for 65% of the absolute carbon emissions in its investment portfolio, comprising both listed equities and corporate bonds.

As part of the pilot year of that programme, Eastspring screened 86 entities or 72 companies and out of those only 19 companies fulfilled all Eastspring’s criteria, while the remaining 53 companies have deficiencies in the disclosure of their transition plans, Eastspring said.

Eastspring also said it had largely completed its pledge to divest all direct investments in businesses that derive more than 30% of their revenue from coal having divested 97% of directly held fixed income assets. Due to illiquidity in the market, Eastspring was unable to fully divest from one remaining holding of $12.1m.

Eastspring also noted that it had already well exceeded its goal of reducing the portfolio weighted average carbon intensity score (WACI) by 25% by 2025. It reduced its WACI score by 43% against the 2019, which translates to a 26% year on year reduction.

Eastspring also said 87% of its SICAV range of funds were aligned with SFDR Article 8, while the remaining 13% were article 6 funds.

In terms of proxy voting, the total percentage of items voted on by investment teams that were eligible for proxy voting went up slightly to 97.7% from 97.4% the year before, albeit this was still below the 99.6% figure in 2020.

Finally, Eastspring’s updated Responsible Investment policy, which harmonises all all RI-related policies across its markets, was approved last year and came into effect on 1 January 2023.

Part of the Mark Allen Group.