(08 October 2018. Pasay City, Philippines) SM is taking an active role in the private sector’s involvement in sustainability reporting and sustainable development following the conclusion of the first Global Reporting Initiative (GRI) Sustainability Summit at Conrad Manila.

Teresita Sy-Coson, SM Vice Chair said that the agenda of businesses are closely linked with sustainability and all are faced with greater unpredictability due to the devastating effects of climate change and the widening gap in social and economic opportunities in the world.

“As more and more businesses get together to pursue the objective of operating sustainably, there is a need for us to have common measures on how we are performing,” Sy-Coson said.

Sy-Coson emphasized that sustainability has become an integral part of doing business. She said “impact investments”, or those that put sustainability elements into the equation, are critical. These impact investments give due importance to both financial and non-financial indicators from the time a project is conceived.

She added that sustainability considerations are vital in mitigating risks. “We at SM believe that when we view opportunities with the wider lens of assessing our role in environmental or social issues, it enables us to identify and better prepare for risks,” Sy-Coson said.

She asked businesses to consider how they can complement or provide support and access to socio-economic safety nets, adding that philanthropy, corporate social responsibility and creating shared value remain to be pillars in sustainability.

Hans T. Sy, SM Prime Holdings Chairman of the Executive Committee, for his part, said that in the Philippines, the private sector contributes about 70 to 80 percent of capital investments towards the development of critical infrastructure.

These include facilities for safety and security, transportation, communication and other basic services like power and water.

“As the public sector takes a lead role in regulatory and governance functions, the private sector can share the lead in adopting responsible and sustainable business practices. In particular, businesses should take a closer look at integrating disaster risk reduction into their business models and processes,” Sy said.

SM Prime’s investments in resilience has become an indispensable element of the company’s strategic objectives. “To us, it is an investment that not only enables the long-term success and viability of our business but also safeguards the lives and interests of our stakeholders,” he said.

SM Prime has committed to allocate 10 percent of its capital expenditures to incorporate disaster resilient features in the design and construction of its property developments.

The GRI Summit gathered key private and public sector leaders to help promote sustainability reporting in the Philippines. GRI, the lead convenor, has partnered with the SM group of companies led by SM Investments Corporation as well as with the Australian Embassy in the Philippines, the Philippine Business for Environment and the Makati Business Club in launching this summit in the country.

GRI said that some 7% of publicly-listed companies or 23 of the 263 listed companies in the Philippines, which comprise at least 35% of the market capitalization in the Philippine Stock Exchange, have issued Sustainability Reports.

In order for firms to operate over a long period, they must pay attention to things other than the bottom-line. These include managing the impact on the global or local environment, community, society and economy. To reflect their economic, environmental, social and governance performance, a sustainability report is issued by corporates and organizations.

Know more about SM’s Sustainability Stories here: https://www.sminvestments.com/company-releases/sm-gather-private-sector-landmark-sustainability-summit

Sustainability Reports: https://www.sminvestments.com/sustainability/sustainability-report

About SM Investments Corporation

SM Investments Corporation is a leading Philippine company that is invested in market leading businesses in retail, banking and property. It also invests in ventures that capture high growth opportunities in the emerging Philippine economy.

SM’s retail operations are the country’s largest and most diversified with its food, non-food and specialty retail stores. SM’s property arm, SM Prime Holdings, Inc., is the largest integrated property developer in the Philippines with interests in malls, residences, offices, hotels and convention centers as well as tourism-related property developments. SM’s interests in banking are in BDO Unibank, Inc., the country’s largest bank and China Banking Corporation, the 7th largest bank.

For more about SM, visit www.sminvestments.com

For further inquiries, please contact:

Paul Arcenas
VP, Planning and Corporate Communications
SM Investments Corporation
E-mail: paul.arcenas@sminvestments.com
Tel. No. (632) 857-0100 local 1039