In all of its business activities, Standard Bank Group aims to deliver net-positive social, economic and environmental outcomes. This is reflected in our purpose – Africa is our home, we drive her growth. To ensure that we fulfil this overarching purpose, we have embedded social, economic and environmental (SEE) considerations into our corporate strategy and day-to-day decisions.
Sustainable development is now one of the most important considerations for investors and the companies they invest in
We are committed to facilitating African economies’ access to energy and other infrastructure essential for economic growth and human development, while aligning with the objectives of the Paris Agreement and minimising harmful environmental impacts associated with the use of fossil fuels. We are working to support a just transition to a low carbon economy in our countries of operation, but we recognise that this will take time, and will need careful consideration of the social impacts.
We participate in local and global business and industry forums and engage with civil society organisations with a focus on understanding our social and environmental impacts and stakeholder concerns and expectations. We choose to hold ourselves to a number of voluntary global standards regarding responsible business practice, including the UN Principles for Responsible Banking, the Equator Principles, and the UN Women He4She initiative and the UN Women Empowerment Principles. Through the UN Principles for Responsible Banking Board, we are working with other banks to develop impact measurement tools and methodologies that all 200 signatory banks will be able to use.
Our business is inherently about trade-offs. Every decision we make will have opportunity costs and will have positive and negative impacts. We cannot promise to satisfy all our stakeholders. But we do promise that every decision we take will be carefully considered and will aim to make Africa a better place now, and for the generations to come.
Achieving our group purpose and strategy depends on our reputation as a trusted partner across Africa. The group’s code of ethics, organisational culture and values determine how we do business and with whom we do business.
During 2020, the group further strengthened and matured our management of non-financial risks, embedding oversight at group, risk type and business unit levels. As part of this process, ESG Risk was further integrated into the group’s enterprise risk management (ERM) framework.
Sustainable growth is core to our strategy
Reaching key ESG milestones during 2020 amid the pandemic
Our research and perspectives on sustainable development
Recognition and partnerships that drive us forward
This report includes information about how we ensure that a strong ethical and conduct culture is embedded across the group, and on how we support the development of our employees, as well as information aligned with the recommendations of the Task Force on climate related disclosures.