CDC has internal objectives to invest responsibly in relation to our direct investees (internally managed equity and debt) and our fund managers and their underlying portfolio. During the investment process, the ESG risks and opportunities associated with each potential deal are assessed at each stage of the cycle. The ESG performance of our portfolio is monitored on an ongoing basis by our Environmental and Social Responsibility (E&S) and Business Integrity (BI) teams, and on a quarterly basis at operational and board-level meetings, and to our shareholder. CDC also keeps its own policies and standard operating procedures under review to remain at the forefront of good industry practice and in line with our peers. Each year CDC sets team objectives to produce good practice guidance on topical ESG-related issues. For example, CDC co-authored guidance on modern slavery and produced practical tools on waste management and the PE industry’s approach to integrating the SDGs into their investment strategies. CDC also provided additional and updated guidance via its ESG Toolkit on resource efficiency and the circular economy, cumulative impacts, stakeholder engagement and several industry sector guides, among other areas. CDC continues to prioritise training, site visits and monitoring trips to its investments based on ESG risk and the quality of E&S management systems, and the commitments we make to deliver E&S 'additionality' beyond compliance.
During 2018, CDC made a corporate commitment to increase its focus on four strategic areas identified in the Strategic Framework 2017-2021, three of which are E&S issues: climate, job quality and gender. The aim is to leverage our knowledge outside the bounds of direct transaction support to increase CDC's role in market shaping and development to maximise our impact.