Yuchengco-led Rizal Commercial Banking Corporation (RCBC) has been named as the Top Community Centric Companies in Asia award by the Asia Corporate Excellence & Sustainability Awards (ACES) for taking the right steps towards sustainability.
ACES is a prestigious award-giving body that recognizes top leadership and sustainability players across Asia. The winners list will be disclosed by ACES on Nov 19, 2021.
Since its inauguration in 2014, the ACES Awards has awarded as many as 331 companies, with combined sustainability investment of $16.5 billion and revenues of $1.23 trillion, across 17 countries within the region.
In its evaluation report on RCBC, ACES cited the Bank’s holistic approach in sustainability, its extensive disclosures in its Sustainability Report, and the effective incorporation of sustainability in the Bank’s governance and business activities. “One of the biggest environmental initiatives by RCBC is their announcement in December 2020, to stop financing Coal related businesses, as the Philippines moves towards renewable energy” – the ACES report highlighted.
Since 2011, RCBC has been implementing its Environmental and Social Management System (ESMS), for all lending relationships, both pipeline and portfolio.
The Bank’s ESMS Policy is a declaration of its commitment to sustainable development and management of E&S issues. The ACES notes that RCBC has been “aware of E&S impacts, long before their first published Sustainability Report in 2019.”
The Yuchengco-led bank also has its own Sustainable Finance Framework (issued in April 2019), which articulates the Bank’s strategy to raise funds and lend to priority sectors.
In designing the framework, RCBC engaged global third-party advisers ING Bank and Sustainalytics, a leading independent ESG research and ratings provider. The framework likewise adheres to global definitions issued by the International Capital Market Association (ICMA) Green and Social Bond Principles, as well as the ASEAN Green and Sustainability Bond Standards.
The ACES evaluation report further recognized how RCBC’s Community initiatives are in line with the Bank’s sustainability approach, with focus on improving digital financing in rural communities. Products that promote financial inclusion (Rizal MicroBank’s lending activities, DiskarTech, Go Digital, and ATM Go) along with RCBC’s continued support for SME loans create sustainable opportunities across the Bank’s value chain. These also demonstrate RCBC’s “meaningful and ongoing engagement with the communities” – one of the distinct strengths of ACES Top Community Centric companies in Asia.
Originally published in Business Mirror (August 21, 2021) https://businessmirror.com.ph/2021/08/21/rcbc-wins-at-aces-awards-2021-for-sustainability-efforts/