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Specialist in Asia Pacific, Japan, China, India and South East Asia and Global Emerging Market equities.

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Stewart Investors manage investment portfolios on behalf of our clients over the long term and have held shares in some companies for over 20 years. They launched their first investment strategy in 1988.

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Australain Equities Growth Responsible Investment

Approach to Responsible Investment

Stewardship and ESG integration

ESG issues are fundamental to infrastructure companies, given they have significant service obligations and moral accountability to the communities in which they operate. We therefore believe it is important that ESG issues are fully integrated into the investment process.

We do not screen companies on ESG criteria, but seek to understand the risks and capture them in our proprietary quality ranking.

Integration 

ESG analysis is integrated into our investment process through our quality assessment and ranking model. This model consists of 25 criteria that influence stock returns in general and infrastructure securities in particular. A score is assigned to each criterion; a lower quality score makes it harder for a stock to be included within the overall portfolio. ESG criteria account for 24% of the overall quality score. 

Incorporating ESG considerations into the investment process in this way helps to inform our decisions of whether or not to hold shares in a specific company at any given point. 

Assessment and monitoring 

Infrastructure companies are assessed on a broad range of ESG-related factors and are relevant for every company we look at. Some notable examples include:

  • Environmental issues are key drivers for electric utilities, energy infrastructure (oil & gas pipelines & storage) and railways.
  • Social issues are particularly important to utility companies, as they have obligations to the communities where they provide essential services.
  • Governance issues are important performance drivers for all infrastructure stocks. Board composition and alignment of interests are considered to be particularly important, so they are rated separately in our ESG scoring process.

Engagement 

We look to positively influence companies towards ESG best-practice. Through company engagement, we seek to highlight areas for potential improvement, encourage disclosure on ESG issues, and commend companies that are making progress in this area. We typically engage companies on material issues to achieve specific outcomes, namely to ensure good ESG practices to help protect investor interests. 

Case studies

We believe that a strong commitment to stewardship is an essential component of a strong approach to responsible investment (RI), and that embedding RI into the core of our investment activities is in the best long-term interests of our clients. For more than a decade we have systematically and progressively improved our practices and processes across our investment capabilities globally.

Learn more through our interactive case studies map

Climate change

The section below provides addition, team specific, information on climate change. Further information on our approach to climate change can be found in our climate change statement.

Team Climate Change Statement

Key climate-related risks in our team’s portfolio

How we identify these risks

How we address these risks

The targets and objectives we have set

[1] Certain statements, estimates, and projections in this document may be forward-looking statements.  These forward-looking statements are based upon First Sentier Investors’ current assumptions and beliefs, in light of currently available information, but involve known and unknown risks and uncertainties. Actual actions or results may differ materially from those discussed.  Readers are cautioned not to place undue reliance on these forward-looking statements. There is no certainty that current conditions will last, and First Sentier Investors undertakes no obligation to correct, revise or update information herein, whether as a result of new information, future events or otherwise.

Carbon footprint

For more information, see our Carbon Footprint explainer


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Disclaimer: Reference to specific securities (if any) is included for the purpose of illustration only and should not be construed as a recommendation to buy or sell the same. All securities mentioned herein may or may not form part of the holdings of First Sentier Investors’ portfolios at a certain point in time, and the holdings may change over time.

Proxy voting

Proxy voting history by type of resolution

The table below contains the proxy voting history for the team by issue type. The chart provides the same information for FY2019.

Voting Independence 

The chart below shows the number of times the team has voted against management recommendations, proxy advisors' recommendations, or against both. The purpose of this table is to show the independent judgement which is applied by the team when making voting decisions.

Proxy voting by region

The chart below shows the number of times the team has voted in each region and the percentage of votes against management and our proxy advisors' recommendations, or against both. The purpose of this table is to show the regional difference in voting patterns and governance concerns. 

Proxy voting information is as at 31/12/2019
Source: First Sentier Investors / CGI Glass Lewis

(Source: First Sentier Investors Responsible Investment & Stewardship Report 2019) 

Important information

This material is for general information purposes only. It does not constitute investment or financial advice and does not take into account any specific investment objectives, financial situation or needs. This is not an offer to provide asset management services, is not a recommendation or an offer or solicitation to buy, hold or sell any security or to execute any agreement for portfolio management or investment advisory services and this material has not been prepared in connection with any such offer. Before making any investment decision you should consider, with the assistance of a financial advisor, your individual investment needs, objectives and financial situation.

We have taken reasonable care to ensure that this material is accurate, current, and complete and fit for its intended purpose and audience as at the date of publication. No assurance is given or liability accepted regarding the accuracy, validity or completeness of this material and we do not undertake to update it in future if circumstances change.

To the extent this material contains any expression of opinion or forward-looking statements, such opinions and statements are based on assumptions, matters and sources believed to be true and reliable at the time of publication only. This material reflects the views of the individual writers only. Those views may change, may not prove to be valid and may not reflect the views of everyone at First Sentier Investors.

About First Sentier Investors

References to ‘we’, ‘us’ or ‘our’ are references to First Sentier Investors, a global asset management business which is ultimately owned by Mitsubishi UFJ Financial Group. Certain of our investment teams operate under the trading names FSSA Investment Managers, Stewart Investors and Realindex Investments, all of which are part of the First Sentier Investors group.

We communicate and conduct business through different legal entities in different locations. This material is communicated in:

  • Hong Kong by First Sentier Investors (Hong Kong) Limited and has not been reviewed by the Securities & Futures Commission in Hong Kong. First Sentier Investors is a business name of First Sentier Investors (Hong Kong) Limited.
  • Singapore by First Sentier Investors (Singapore) (reg company no. 196900420D) and this publication or advertisement has not been reviewed by the Monetary Authority of Singapore. First Sentier Investors (registration number 53236800B) is a business division of First Sentier Investors (Singapore).

To the extent permitted by law, MUFG and its subsidiaries are not liable for any loss or damage as a result of reliance on any statement or information contained in this document. Neither MUFG nor any of its subsidiaries guarantee the performance of any investment products referred to in this document or the repayment of capital. Any investments referred to are not deposits or other liabilities of MUFG or its subsidiaries, and are subject to investment risk, including loss of income and capital invested.

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