Since publicly-listed companies have become duty-bound to submit a sustainability report alongside their annual report starting in 2019, the awareness of sustainability investing has been growing in the Philippines Sustainability investing, where a person can invest in funds that aim to help overall environmental or social good is a very new concept for the country compared to other nations.
Sustainable investments in the U.S., for one, totaled $17.1 trillion at the beginning of 2020, 42% more from $12 trillion at the beginning of 2018. Other Asian nations have also been investing in more sustainable assets. For example, there were 17 new ESG (environmental, social, governance) fund launches from China, South Korea, India, and Taiwan in the fourth quarter of 2020. Thus, the launch of the Manila-based ATR Asset Management (ATRAM) last Feb.17 could not be more timely.
ATRAM is a firm to support United Nation’s Sustainable Development Goals (SDG) and is in fact, the first company in the Philippines to do so. Born from this goal is the ATRAM Philippine Sustainable Development and Growth Fund, where, people can invest in domestic companies that integrate SDG successfully in their products, programs, and operations.
Sustainable investing, matters more now than ever, due to the unstable climate of the world. Every day, we are given no choice but to see the negative effects of different economic, environmental, and social-political problems. It is time for companies to see that integrating important values, such as the SDG, as important to their long-term success. Investors, especially Millenials, want more than financial returns now. They desire to see more companies who align with their values and prioritize leaving a positive impact on the society we all live in.