We strongly believe that through his investments an investor can nudge companies and countries to make efforts. This explains the choice for the “best in class” approach since it is a positive approach. This pushes countries and companies to improve in order to become (or stay) investable. In our view exclusion of complete sectors would take away the carrot for improvement. Nevertheless, some subsectors which are widely considered to be controversial, are automatically excluded.
Additionally, to the subsector exclusion factors we have a negative screening on companies which are considered to be involved in (very) severe controversies. While for equities and corporate bonds we can – at least for part of the universe – rely on external sources in order to assess the extra-financial ESG-criteria this is not the case in sovereign bonds. As such we have developed an in-house ESG-methodology for this kind of investments.