There has been a recent escalation in the understanding, adoption, and significance of environmental, social and governance (ESG) metrics in Asia, about 60% of investors in APAC have been integrating ESG for less than 3 years, compared to 30% in Europe and 44% in North America according to the BNP Paribas ESG Global Survey 2021. Further report by Morningstar stated that capital flows into ESG funds continue to increase with total assets invested in Asia-domiciled funds at US$36.3 billion at the end of June 2021. Thailand leads the six ASEAN countries in terms of average ESG performance, as a result of moderate risk exposure level and relatively good management score based on the report of Morningstar firm. Thailand launched a five-year National Economic and Social Development Plan to adhere to the 20-year National Strategy Framework (2017-2036), meet SDG targets, the Thailand 4.0 Policy, and other reforms.
Thailand’s Government Pension Fund, with assets of around US$32 billion is aiming to become a leader in sustainable investing in the country as well as there was growing interest from investors and consumers in sustainability as assets invested in in ESG exchange-traded funds and exchange-traded products reached a record US$280 billion in 2021 according to Asia Asset Management and Bangkok Post respectively. Further undertaking of The Board of Investment of Thailand is as set out in a recently issued notification in which it provides three additional years of corporate income tax exemptions for promoted businesses that adopt CCUS. Meanwhile, the neighbouring countries, Vietnam, pledged to reach a net-zero carbon emission target by 2050, stop deforestation by 2030, and phase out coal-fired power by 2040. In Cambodia, the Securities and Exchange Regulator of Cambodia’s (SERC) is playing a part to ensure local GSS bond market development is consistent with regional initiatives.