28 April 2017

HSBC has published a new report outlining the steps it takes to meet its legal, social and environmental obligations.

The Environmental, Social and Governance (ESG) Update reflects HSBC’s commitment to playing a positive role in society and to be transparent about its wider impact as well as its financial performance. The bank intends to publish further updates every six months.

The report explains the bank’s policies – and gives evidence of their impact – in a broad range of areas, including climate change, employee engagement and tackling financial crime. It contains information that the bank has never made public before, such as staff survey results and customer satisfaction scores.

In his foreword to the report, Stuart Gulliver, Group Chief Executive, HSBC, said: “Strong relationships with customers, employees and wider communities are key to sustainable success. Any business that overlooks its wider impact on people and the planet is unlikely to succeed over the long term.”

“Moving in the right direction”

Mr Gulliver added that the bank has a good record in areas such as cutting carbon emissions. Because of its successes in managing its own carbon footprint, HSBC is now tightening up its environmental targets for 2020 . In 2016 it received the highest possible grade in a global index run by CDP, a not-for-profit organisation that rates companies on their work to mitigate climate change.

The report also outlines the diversity awards and recognition won by HSBC in countries around the world (see box). “I am proud of our success so far in making HSBC a more diverse and inclusive workplace which welcomes and supports people of all backgrounds,” Mr Gulliver said.

But he acknowledged that there is more work to be done in other areas. “We are moving in the right direction but have further to go to meet the targets we have set ourselves, and that our shareholders and others expect us to deliver. Being open about this and giving an honest account about the rate of progress is the right thing to do.”

The next ESG Update is due for publication by November 2017.