Sustainable Investment

 

 

APS Bank plc (hereunder referred to as the “Bank”) and its subsidiaries acknowledge that non-financial factors – commonly referred to as Environmental, Social and Governance (ESG) factors – can have an important impact on people, businesses and communities. APS Bank plc is committed to contribute to sustainable investment through its presence in the financial services sector. As a leading community bank, APS Bank plc, has a prominent role to play and takes responsibility for its actions and engagements, as a member of society with its own impact on the planet and on people, but also as a provider of financial services with an indirect impact through the activities of its clients and investments.

APS Bank plc supports its customers goals to contribute positively to society through financial planning. This can be seen through its offering of investments products of an ethical nature, where those firms present in industries/sectors which threaten the community at large and score low in ESG factors are excluded. Reference can be made to the APS Regular Income Ethical Fund and APS Personal and Occupational Pension Plans - Investment Strategies and a suite of ethically screened investments from different service providers.

This prominent position of APS Bank plc is also achieved by fully incorporating sustainability risk into the Group’s investment decisions. Different types of the Group’s investment decision making can lead to sustainability risk. Sustainability risk is a transversal risk of increasing importance. Failure to anticipate and manage this risk can have adverse consequences on the value of the investment. The Group’s sustainability risk management is aligned with the Group’s risk appetite and supports the Bank’s mission to bring sustainable solutions to its clients.

The Group adopted a Sustainability Risk Policy which builds on the Bank’s values (Excellence, Authenticity, Passion, Inclusiveness, Contemporary) and the Bank’s Business Plan and spells out the integration of sustainability risks in investment decision making. The Group integrates sustainability risks in investment decision making by taking stock of ESG factors (e.g. climate change, health protection, sustainability management by the board) and identifies sustainability risks emanating from ESG. Furthermore, the Group has policies in place to screen investments in sectors and industries which are involved in the production of controversial items.

The Bank as Advisor of financial products is to take into account the information which manufacturers of these products are required to disclose. This includes, how they integrate ESG risks into their investment decision making processes and the likely impacts on the financial products’ returns. The Bank’s Investment Distribution Unit is to engage with manufacturers of financial products to comprehend how they undertake the integration of the above. Furthermore, information provided by these manufacturers, as defined - environmental, social and employee matters, respect for human rights, anti-corruption matters, and anti-bribery, are to be integrated in the financial advice provided.

Remuneration Policy of APS Bank plc is also consistent with the Group’s aim to integrate sustainability risks. The Committee is tasked to assess the mechanisms and systems adopted to ensure that the remuneration system properly considers all types of risks.

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APS Bank plc is regulated by the Malta Financial Services Authority as a Credit Institution under the Banking Act 1994 and to carry out Investment Services activities under the Investment Services Act 1994. The Bank is also registered as a Tied Insurance Intermediary under the Insurance Distribution Act 2018.