AIA is a publicly-listed life insurance group established in Shanghai in 1919. Today it has a presence in 18 markets across Asia. The financial institution provides life insurance, accident and health insurance and savings plans, as well as employee benefits, credit life and pension services to corporate clients. As of 2021 it had USD 340 billion in total assets. AIA is listed on the Hong Kong Stock Exchange.
AIA details an engagement process with investees that includes sustainability themes and impact topics. This engagement process includes a clear framework with success criteria and escalation points in the event that the engagement with clients and investees is unsuccessful. AIA has also identified and prioritised its impacts through a materiality assessment process which included feedback from external stakeholders. In terms of gender equality, AIA has 42% of women in senior leadership positions.
AIA has set a target of net-zero financed emissions by 2050. As a member of Climate Action 100+, AIA discloses that it collectively engages with its clients on the topic of climate change. It also discloses the aggregate amount and share of finance it devotes to green bonds under its ESG bonds.
AIA discloses the proportion of its total direct operations workforce for each employee category by age group and gender. It also has a grievance mechanism accessible to all workers, external individuals and communities to raise human rights, as well as bribery and corruption, concerns or complaints. AIA prohibits bribery and corruption and is committed to respecting the health and safety of workers and protecting personal data.
While AIA’s board of directors supports the implementation of a sustainability strategy through its ESG Committee, it is not clear that the end responsibility for sustainability lies with the board. Moreover, there is no evidence that the financial institution links the remuneration of its executive or management teams to sustainability performance criteria. Women are underrepresented on the board of directors where only 2 out of 11 board members are women. Additionally, the financial institution has an opportunity to publicly commit to gender equality and women’s empowerment. While AIA discloses its engagement performance on corporate governance, it does not provide a full engagement report on all sustainability topics.
AIA has an opportunity to disclose an interim emissions reduction targets, such as a 45% reduction in financed emissions by 2030. It could also align its green bonds with internationally recognised frameworks. On the topic of engagement, the financial institution has an opportunity to disclose the key sectors and companies it has identified as priorities to engage with on climate change, specifically on alignment with the Paris Agreement. There is no evidence that AIA discloses time-bound targets explicitly for its climate solutions or commits to minimising its negative impacts on nature and biodiversity. Moreover, while the financial institution discloses that it has divested from coal, there is no evidence that it does not provide any form of financial service to any new fossil fuel projects or to a company undertaking new fossil fuel projects.
There is no evidence that AIA has a publicly available policy statement committing it to respect human rights. The financial institution has an opportunity to describe a comprehensive process for identifying its human rights risks and impacts across all its activities, especially its financing activities. To provide transparency on financial inclusivity, AIA could disclose the amount of finance directed towards, for example, women-owned businesses, small- and medium-sized enterprises (SMEs) or low-income developing countries.
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Hong Kong, China
Revenue: USD 48 billion; Total assets: USD 340 billion