Thailand’s Government Pension Fund adopts ESG lens

Stock_Exchange_of_ThailandThailand’s Government Pension Fund (GPF) is aiming to use an ESG lens for all of its investments in the Thai market across equity classes including real estate, private equity and infrastructure by the first quarter of 2020. Speaking at the GPF-Bloomberg Sustainable Investing Forum in Bangkok on October 30, Vitai Ratanakorn, Secretary-General of GPF added that the pension fund “will not invest in a company if we have material concerns on its ESG track record.” He added that the GPF’s scoring tool will be completed by the end of 2020 and used to assess investment opportunities in Thai equities and fixed income assets. Of more than 140 investors, asset owners and asset managers from Thailand and the region who were surveyed, 89% said ESG-integrated portfolios are likely to perform as well as, or better than those that are not. More than half (51%) said they would increase their sustainable investments over the next year. Investing in climate change and diversity and inclusion were two areas tipped to do well over the next 12 months. Dr Seree Nonthasoot, a GPF board member and the governor of the stock exchange of Thailand, said the pension fund’s 1 billion baht (US$33.1 million) ESG-focused portfolio saw a 4.6% return over 10 months. ©2019 funds global asia

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