The responsible investment approach of MN is based on ten leading principles that are derived from the six UN Principles of Responsible Investment:
- MN seeks to provide solid and responsible investment returns, whilst being mindful of the social impact of its policies, prevent that its policies give rise to or exacerbate social problems, and, in its capacity as a pension administrator, contribute to resolving social issues. In doing so, MN will have regard to changing social views and standards.
- Businesses should develop and implement a strategy which will generate shareholder value in the long term. This implies that the company must generate economic returns, serve its customers and generally, ensure continuity and employment.
- Businesses should set up a corporate governance framework that protects the rights of minority shareholders, gives management sufficient powers to implement the company's strategy and policies, and ensures adequate checks and balances, independent supervision, stakeholder engagement and compliance with national legislation and codes.
- MN will not directly or indirectly invest in companies and/or other investment vehicles that manufacture products in violation of international treaties signed by the Netherlands.
- Businesses should, within their sphere of influence, support and respect the protection of internationally proclaimed human rights and make sure that they are not complicit in human rights abuses.
- Businesses should uphold the freedom of association and the effective recognition of the right to collective bargaining, and endeavour to ban all forms of forced and compulsory labour, child labour, and discrimination in respect of employment and profession.
- Businesses should support a precautionary approach to environmental challenges, undertake initiatives to promote greater environmental responsibility and encourage the development and diffusion of environmentally friendly technologies.
- Businesses should work against corruption in all its forms, including extortion and bribery.
- Businesses should encourage, monitor, and apply these principles to their business partners and subcontractors and accept responsibility for applying these principles across the supply chain.
- Businesses should be transparent and report on their activities and progress towards implementing their policies Our policy is further operationalized via four pillars: Exclusion, ESG-integration, Active Ownership (engagement, proxy voting and legal actions) and Thematic/Impact Investments. We have a dedicated Responsible Investment& Governance team (6 members) that is responsible for all these activities.
Exclusion: MN excludes companies that are directly involved in the development, production and/or maintenance of products and/or services that are not compliant with certain treaties and criteria, such as the Convention on cluster ammunition, Chemical Weapons Conventions and Biological and Toxin weapons Convention. In addition international treaties signed by the Dutch Government, and countries which have been sanctioned by the UN and EU are excluded.
ESG integration: MN believes that responsible investment is first and foremost about taking ESG factors into account in all investment decisions. This means for us integration in our beliefs and strategy, in asset class specific investment strategies in mandates, the selection and monitoring of our external managers and the active investment decisions of our internal asset management.
MN believes in the co-existence of financial and social return on investments. On one hand it is our aim by conducting engagement on holdings to limit the potential negative impact of business on the environment, people and society and corporate governance (ESG). On the other hand, we also aim to leverage the potential positive impact of business within these same three themes (ESG). The key-objectives for engagement are that companies acquire the ability:
- To fully participate in the low-carbon economy energy transition (E);
- To protect the human and labour rights of workers in the global supply chain (S);
- To reward company executives according to an adequate and balanced remuneration scheme in line with the interests of (minority) shareholders (G).
MN operates on the basis of a clearly defined engagement policy. The engagement focus lies on
- Significant Dutch holdings;
- Significant holdings with a Global Compact violator status (downside risk);
- Significant holdings that present material ESG-risks within a few key sustainability themes as prioritised by our clients (thematic engagement); and
- Significant holdings that present general high material ESG-risks (adhoc/incidents)
Thematic Investments: Thematic investment looks at investment opportunities that are attractive both from the return point of view and from an ESG standpoint. Examples of initiatives in which MN invests are renewable energy in the property portfolio. The PME Responsible Investment policy can be found through https://www.metalektropensioen.nl/downloads?cms%5Bcm329%5D%5Bdownload%5D=946.