Poor management of long-term ESG related risks not only impacts our investments but can potentially harm the broader community and environment as well. Managing ESG risks implies that we must behave as the owners of assets rather than just investors in various assets. It is also important to ensure that the Funds' agents, be they investment managers, boards, or company executives, act in our interests and are seeking to maximise the long-term returns on behalf of the Funds. ESG considerations are therefore integrated into the Funds' investment activities from investment selection and due diligence to ownership activities such as monitoring our assets, exercising our voting rights (where applicable) and engaging with our stakeholders to improve ESG practices in our direct asset portfolio.
As stewards of our members' retirement savings, we have a duty to act in their best interests and to protect and grow the real value of their assets. Our Responsible Investment approach is one of ESG integration.
For investments in our property portfolio where either FSS or our manager takes a board seat, we ensure our ESG principles influence board decisions. A critical part of this is a responsibility to monitor and engage with the management and boards of assets/companies in which we invest, directly and through the fund managers we appoint.
We also have strong processes in place to monitor any ESG related risks and objectives for each asset and report on those actions to our Direct Asset Committee. Our Responsible Investment approach focusses on issues such as diversity, modern slavery and climate change risks and opportunities as well as opportunities in affordable housing.