With regards to our active equity investments, our Responsible Investment policy is explicit with regards to the corporate governance standards that we expect the companies that we invest in to apply.
With regards to ESG risks in general, our policy states the following:
'The specific ESG risks that a given company faces will vary by sector. In general, where the ESG risks that a company faces are financially material, we would typically expect the following disclosures:
An identification of material ESG risks;
Demonstrable policies and management systems to mitigate material ESG risks;
Meaningful and challenging sustainability targets;
Details of how sustainability links to the company's broader strategy;
Board-level accountability for sustainability activities; and
Evidence of industry and regulator engagement.'
Whilst Aegon Asset Management regularly engages with companies on a range of material environmental and social issues, our policy deliberately does not explicitly outline what E&S standards we expect of companies standards since best practices vary by sector (and within sectors), region and the maturity of the organisation.
Aegon Asset Management engages in three ways: i. Directly (in-house) by our dedicated RI engagement team in collaboration with investment analysts, ii. Directly, but with the support of external research providers, and iii. Through collaborative initiatives. Aegon Asset Management reports on progress and developments in its engagement program. Our engagement activities are reported in the annual Aegon Asset Management RI Report, which provides stakeholders with most relevant case studies.