88% of Hong Kong investors say that a company’s sustainability efforts would affect their investment decision according to this new study on Environmental, Social and Governance (ESG) Reporting by MSLGROUP, SHINEWING Hong Kong and YouGov.
The study, conducted by YouGov, surveyed 200 investors with more than HK$100,000 to invest in the past 12 months and who are mostly senior management and professionals in Hong Kong on their views on Corporate Social Responsibility (‘CSR’) and the effect of the planned implementation of “comply or explain” reporting obligation which may come into effect in 2015.
The results of the survey also revealed that 42% of the respondents have paid more attention to CSR efforts being undertaken by companies after the 2008 financial crisis, which critics have attributed at least in part to unethical behaviour of corporations.
While investors are paying more attention, the survey suggests that Hong Kong companies have failed to impress investors with their corporate social responsibility efforts. One-fifth of the respondents felt unable to even select three Hong Kong listed companies that are best in CSR. The top three performers cited by respondents in terms of CSR among the top twenty listed companies on the Hang Seng Index are HSBC (43%), Hong Kong and China Gas Company (28%) and Sun Hung Kai Properties (22%).