Bank of China

RATING

SECTOR

Banking

WEBSITE

CONTACT

Building No. 1
Fuxingmennei Dajie, Xicheng District
Beijing
100818 Beijing Province
China

Phone: +852 2826 6888
Fax: +852 2810 5830

STOCK EXCHANGE

LISTING

  • Forbes World’s Best Banks, 2020
  • #10 Global 2000, 2020
  • #42 Sales in Global 2000, 2020
  • #10 Profit in Global 2000, 2020
  • #5 Assets in Global 2000, 2020
  • #77 Value in Global 2000, 2020
  • #480 World’s Best Employers 2018

EMPLOYEES

311,133

CHIEF SUSTAINABILITY OFFICER

No CSO or equivalent found.

AWARDS

  • Best Bank Awards 2019: Best Bank for CSR in Hong Kong (Asiamoney)
  • Best CSR Bank – Malaysia 2019 (Global Business Outlook)
  • A constituent of the Hang Seng Corporate Sustainability Index and Hang Seng (Mainland and HK) Corporate Sustainability Index for 10 consecutive years and a constituent of the Hang Seng Corporate Sustainability Benchmark Index for 9 consecutive years
  • Rated AA on environmental, social and governance-related performance (MSCI ESG Research LLC)
  • Awarded Caring Company Logo for 17 consecutive years (The Hong Kong Council of Social Service)
  • Gold Award for Volunteer Service – Organisation for 10 consecutive years, The Award of 10,000 Hours for Volunteer Service and Merit Award for Highest Service Hour Award (Private Organisations – Category 1) (Social Welfare Department)
  • HR Distinction Awards 2019: Excellence in Learning & Development – Silver (Human Resources)Asia Recruitment Awards 2019 (Human Resources): Best Graduate Recruitment Programme – Gold Best Internship Programme – Gold Best Management Trainee Programme – Silver Best Mass Recruitment – Bronze
  • Hong Kong Banking Industry Talent Development Awards Programme: HKIB Talent Development Award (Category I) (The Hong Kong Institute of Bankers) 
  • Best Corporate Financial Education Leadership of the Year, Gold Award for Corporate Financial Education Leadership and Accredited Professional Financial Planning Firm (Institute of Financial Planners of Hong Kong)
  • HR Distinction Awards 2019 (Human Resources) : Excellence in Employee Development – Silver Excellence in Talent Management – Bronze Excellence in HR Strategic Plan – Bronze
  • Gold Stevie® Winner – Award for Innovative Management in Financial Industries and Gold Stevie® Winner – Award for Innovation in Human Resources Management, Planning & Practice (Asia-Pacific Stevie® Awards) 
  • Good MPF Employer 5 Years, e-Contribution Award and MPF Support Award (Mandatory Provident Fund Schemes Authority)

 

CONTENT SOURCE

FURTHER READING

Report created by Ellie Weiss

Bank of China

SECTIONS :  Sustainability •  Targets    Evaluation  •  Key Points  •  Overview

Company Activity

Bank of China is one of the largest state-owned commercial banks in China. It is headquartered in Beijing, China and was founded by Chen Jintao in 1912. It falls under its parent organization, Central Huijin Investment.

The bank has multiple sectors including Corporate Banking, Personal Banking, Treasury Operations, Investment Banking, and Insurance:

  • The Corporate Banking section offers services like loans, custody, and trade-related products to corporate customers, government authorities and financial institutions 
  • The Personal Banking segment provides services like accounts, savings, and deposits to retail customers 
  • Treasury Operations deals with tasks like foreign transactions and trades, money market management, and asset and liability management 
  • Their Investment Banking sector works on equity and debt underwriting, investment research, and stock brokerage 
  • Insurance focuses on underwriting insurance business and services

Company Sustainability Activity

The Bank of China bases its sustainability activities on the three elements of ESG: the environment, social needs, and good governance. The bank has made many economic development contributions and has stressed the importance of supporting community development.

The bank’s main focus is on their new Sustainability Committee, through which they promote sustainable development throughout their business. They assist the Board and supervise sustainability-related issues, CSR, and corporate culture. 

The Bank of China has many initiatives to help economic development. They also have many support programs for their own employees to create a safe and beneficial work environment. The Bank engages with many organizations around them to aid in community development; it has notably focused on health and wellbeing projects.

Highlights

  • Creating and committing to a CSR policy to promote sustainable development for the economy, mostly through stakeholder relationships
  • Supporting infrastructure development projects with project financing and syndicated loans with their Belt and Road Initiative
  • Recruiting a diverse and inclusive staff that receive benefits such as medical support, paid leave, and retirement support
  • Implementing more energy-saving practices in their main buildings, such as LED lights, solar panels, and hand dryers 
  • Sponsoring many charities that help support their community in areas like food for the hungry, medical support for single mothers, and nature education programs for students

Targets


The company does not disclose this information.

Progress

  • Paper purchase reduced by 7% from 2018-2019
  • Total electricity consumption reduced by 0.3% from 2018-2019
  • Total town gas consumption reduced by 1% from 2018-2019
  • Total diesel consumption for the corporate fleet reduced by 10% from 2018-2019
  • Total energy consumption reduced by 0.3% from 2018-2019
  • General waste reduced by 29% from 2018-2019
  • Food waste reduced by 18% from 2018-2019

Certificates

  • ISO 14001 Environmental Management System Certification
  • ISO 50001 Energy Management Systems Certification
  • Indoor Air Quality Certificate – Excellent Class
  • Certificate of Quality Water Supply Scheme for Buildings
  • Hygiene Control Management Systems Certification
 

UN Sustainable Development Goals

UN SDGs Compliance

SDG 1: No Poverty

  • Worked with the Labour and Welfare Bureau to help participants in the Child Development Fund to open savings and deposit accounts, helping children from low-income families to save and manage money and develop financial self-discipline early on
  • Provide financial support for the SME Financing Guarantee Scheme by helping them respond to market challenges
  • Removing service fees for personal integrated banking services and general banking accounts to help the underprivileged and promote financial inclusion
  • 40% of branches are within 10 minutes of walking distance of public housing estates
  • Donated to the BOC Caring Hearts for the Elderly Project of the Hong Kong Single Parents Association
  • Donated RMB 400 million Indonesian Rupiah to the Indonesian Red Cross to alleviate suffering from those affected by tsunamis in Indonesia’s Banten Province in 2018 and flooding in Papua Province in 2019
  • Donated RMB 500 million Lao Kip to local Red Cross for rescue funds during a seven-story building collapsed in Preah Sihanouk City in 2019

SDG 3: Good Health and Well-Being

  • Optimized group medical insurance and increased medical coverage for outpatient, inpatient, dental, childbirth expenses, family insurance
  • Provided training courses to teach employees about occupational safety and health
  • Implemented Occupational Health and Safety Guidelines
  • Regular safety inspections
  • Ergonomic products like spinal cushions, adjustable keyboard trays, gel mousepads are given to employees for more comfortable and healthier work environments
  • Sponsored Food Angel x BOC Food Rescue and Assistance Project: surplus food is prepared into hot meals for those in need, reducing environmental impact from food waste and reducing hunger levels in Hong Kong
    • They have obtained over 420,000 kilograms of food
    • Over 1.5 million meal boxes delivered
  • Donated 550 million Vietnamese Dong to Vietnam Cleft Lip Foundation
  • Donated to the Hong Kong Red Cross Blood Transfusion Service of the Hospital Authority to get a new model of vehicle for mobile blood donation that is easier for members of the public, thus benefiting more patients
    • This is expected to reach 3000 Blood Donation Vehicles annually

SDG 4: Quality Education

SDG 5: Gender Equality

  • Adopted a fair and open recruitment policy to promote diversity and inclusion in line with the Employment Ordinance, Sex Discrimination Ordinance, Family Status Discrimination Ordinance, and Code of Practice against Discrimination in Employment on the Ground of Sexual Orientation in Hong Kong

SDG 7: Affordable and Clean Energy

  • Air-conditioning systems on some floors were converted to a Variable Air Volume system and reduced power consumption by about 8% in the Bank of China Tower
  • Staircase lighting changed to LED, to reduce power consumption by 40,002 kWh, and reduce carbon emissions by 32,002 tonnes of CO2 for the Bank of China Tower
  • Introducing Variable Voltage Variable Frequency Speed Control System for elevators, reducing power consumption by 30% in the Bank of China Tower
  • Ceiling lighting in the lift lobby was replaced by LED to reduce power consumption by 2,912 kWh and reduce carbon emissions by 18.33 tonnes of CO2 for the Bank of China Centre
  • Supports the CLP Renewable Energy Certificate Scheme to purchase 250,000 kWh of locally produced renewable energy (from solar, wind, landfill gas projects)
  • Installed solar-powered renewable energy systems at suitable locations
  • Installed solar-powered lights and LEDs with motion sensors where appropriate

SDG 8: Decent Work and Economic Growth

  • E-Donate Platform reduces admin costs of charitable organizations and helps with the management of donor info, making it easier for the public to make charitable donations
  • Employees receive an Occupational Retirement Scheme and MPF Scheme, life and accident insurance, free health check-ups, paid leave, lunch allowances, preferential rates on mortgages, personal loans, annual leave, marital leave, personal leave, paternity leave, compassionate leave and a 14-week maternity leave
  • Working to provide an ideal career development platform for their staff
  • Implemented job rotation and inter-departmental exchanges to improve employees’ skill sets.
  • Number and rate of high consequence work-related injuries: 0
  • Number and rate of fatalities as a result of work-related injuries: 0
  • Number and rate of recordable work-related injuries: 0
  • Confirmed incidents of discrimination: 0
  • Confirmed incidents of corruption: 0

SDG 9: Industry, Innovation and Infrastructure

  • Belt and Road Initiative: development of the Guangdong-Hong Kong-Macao Greater Bay Area and RMB internationalization
  • Supported large-scale infrastructure developments in the Southeast Asian region (railways, communications equipment, petroleum infrastructure, optical cables, power stations, and water supply infrastructure) with project financing and syndicated loans

SDG 10: Reduced Inequalities

  • In 2019, over 40 charity projects were sponsored (supporting disadvantaged, youth development, environmental protection, carbon reduction, etc.) and helping over 3 million people
  • Sponsored Tung Wah Group of Hospitals to support young people and their families combating improper online information and addiction problems, with 37,000 beneficiaries annually
  • Promoted diversity by sponsoring the Hong Kong Corporate Citizenship Programme to encourage enterprises to fulfill and promote CSR; more than 1940 corporates have taken part

SDG 11: Sustainable Cities and Communities

  • 147 automated banking centers in public organizations and public transport hubs
  • FPS QR Code Bill Collection: first free payment channel for local citizens to settle water, electricity, gas, and tax payments, supporting the development of Hong Kong as a Smart City
  • All facilities are barrier-free for mobility challenged customers; more than 250 voice-navigated ATMs for the visually impaired; and developed a voice-navigated mobile banking app

SDG 12: Responsible Consumption and Production

  • Replacing business travel with video-conference to reduce carbon emissions
  • Installing hand dryers to reduce paper towel and water use
  • Signed onto the Charter on External Lighting: switched off decorative, promotional, and advertising lighting between 7 am and 11 pm
  • Donating reusable office equipment to charitable organizations (over 3700 computers and peripherals)
  • Green Event Pledge by the EPD: using recycled materials for stage setup, re-using event supplies, and sending unwanted materials to recycling or donation centers
  • Set up collection facilities for recycling items (plastics, metals, paper, batteries, fluorescent tubes and light bulbs, toner cartridges)
  • Turning food waste into fish food by a third party
  • Use A4 paper certified by the Forest Stewardship Council
  • Promoting digitalization across all channels to reduce carbon emissions and save energy
    • More than 1.9 million customers opted to receive consolidated e-statements, more than a 30% increase from the previous year
  • Applying blockchain technology to property valuations considerably reduced paper consumption from printing reports
  • Earth Hour: an initiative to turn off all non-essential lighting in major offices during specific times to help energy conservation
  • Sponsored Lai See Packet Recycle and Reuse Programme: encourages recycling and reusing of red packets for Chinese New Year

SDG 13: Climate Action

  • Participated in the Energy Efficiency Loan Scheme run by CLP Power and HK Electric: provides financing services to industrial and commercial customers to implement energy conservation projects
  • Hosted the BOCHK Corporate Environmental Leadership Awards with the Federation of Hong Kong Industries to encourage the integration of environmental protection philosophy and reduce pollution for enterprises
    • The program engaged more than 760 corporate participants and 2,600 environmental projects were completed
    • This resulted in 13 million cubic meters of water being saved.
    • Reducing electricity consumption by over 381 gigawatts, reducing waste by over 6430 million tonnes, recycling 2.4 million tonnes of resources, and reducing emissions by 280,000 tonnes
  • Supported the Human and Nature Inclusion Program: promotes learning for primary and secondary students to develop respect and interest for nature and its conservation
    • 9,000 students are expected to benefit
  • Promotes environmental protection in the workplace with workshops, recycling facilities, posters with environmental messages, and volunteering projects to plant trees and clean beaches 
  • The staff canteen serves vegetarian dishes on Mondays

SDG 14: Life Below Water

  • No Shark Fin Pledge: Pledged to not serve food such as shark fin, endangered reef fish species, or black moss
  • Ending supply of plastic straws at the canteen 

SDG 15: Life on Land

SDG 16: Peace, Justice and Strong Institutions

  • Just established a new Sustainability Committee, to assist the Board and guide/supervise on sustainability-related issues, CSR, and corporate culture
  • Environmental Policy: policy regarding  efforts to actively promote environmental sustainability
  • Credit Risk Management Policies and Procedures: states credit business shall be conducted responsibly, prioritizing socially and environmentally sustainable projects to ensure fulfillment of sustainability principles
  • Sustainable Procurement Policy: how the group procures products and services with environmental and social considerations, encouraging their suppliers to do the same
  • Supply Chain Code: guidelines for procuring major products and services to meet social and environmental standards in International Labour Standards and Principles of Decent Work by International Labour Organisation Core Conventions and other Hong Kong requirements
  • All rules and terms align with Hong Kong regulations, like the Code of Baking Practice and the Treat Customers Fairly Charter

SDG 17: Partnerships for the Goals

  • Works to make sure their suppliers are sustainable through meetings, inspections, reviews, and interviews
  • Builds strong relations with the media through equities, press conferences, and interviews. 
  • Works alongside the government with the use of forums, seminars, and has representatives on committees
 

Evaluation

The Bank of China has a long and detailed Sustainability Report laying out all of the sustainability projects, initiatives, and sponsorships they have taken part in. Moreover, the bank has aligned its goals with many of the SDGs

With that said, despite having a lengthy annual report, there is no mention of any targets or goals for their future. They do not seem to be planning to take any more large steps to become more sustainable.

The bank does have a fair number of certificates, awards, and listings showing their success with sustainability-focused work in the past. Although they do touch on many different SDGs, the bank has a disproportionate emphasis on the SDGs promoting further development for the economy and society. They are currently doing much less in regards to goals focused on the environment.

In addition, the bank fulfills many of the SDGs simply by donating to other organizations. Although this is still beneficial to the community, they seem to be taking more of an approach to offset their own effects rather than changing any of their practices. This is further seen in their increase in gasoline consumption, GHG emissions, paper waste, and plastic bottle use from 2018 to 2019. 

The Bank of China is transparent, generous in donations, and aligned with SDGs. However, without having significant progress with anything environmentally focused and without laying out any future targets.

The Bank of China has been rated a C.

Analyst Outlook: Neutral

The Bank of China must take on more responsibility for their actions instead of offsetting them by funding lists of charities and projects. They also need to focus more on the environmental aspect of sustainable development, rather than just the economic and social aspects.

Furthermore, the Bank of China has decreased its investments in the fossil fuel industry since 2018, however, its total investments are $110.745 B from 2016 to 2020.

Key Points

  • Help support impoverished communities by bringing accessible banking to help them learn about and gain financial independence
  • Donated to help alleviate effects of natural disasters
  • Support underprivileged single mothers and elderly through training courses
  • Employees receive benefits through insurance, medical support, childcare expenses, etc. 
  • Emphasize safe work environments through training, inspections, and implemented guidelines 
  • Food Angel x BOC Food Rescue and Assistance Project: helps reduce food waste and alleviate hunger by repurposing leftover food into hot meals
  • Belt and Road Initiative: supports the development of the Guangdong-Hong Kong-Macao Greater Bay Area through infrastructure projects like railways, communications equipment, and optical cables
  • Work to make sure their suppliers are sustainable through meetings, inspections, reviews, and interviews
  • Builds strong relations with the media through equities, press conferences, and interviews 
  • Works alongside the government with the use of forums, seminars, and has representatives on committees
  • They have zero reported cases of work-related injuries, discrimination or corruption
  • Committed to diversity by sponsoring the Hong Kong Corporate Citizenship Programme and other such programs
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