Businesses in South East Asia are on the precipice of a new roadmap to sustainability as the environmental, social and governance (ESG) agenda gains traction in the region. Last year, the Association of Southeast Asian Nations (ASEAN) released the first version of the ASEAN Taxonomy for Sustainable Finance, a map to help guide relevant stakeholders towards activities that can promote the transition of activities in the real economy onto a more sustainable footing, as well as provide a framework for discussions.
ESG has become the new buzzword in today's corporate world, emerging as an imperative that businesses cannot ignore. This stems from the reality that today, businesses are being held more accountable for their corporate practices surrounding environmental policy, societal practices, and board governance.
In fact, regulators in Malaysia have already introduced the Climate Change and Principle-based Taxonomy (CCPT). Singapore is also on a similar trajectory with the Green Finance Industry Taskforce (GFIT) consultation having ended recently. Increasing regulatory changes are putting into perspective the sheer growth of ESG in the region.