An international seminar-workshop entitled, “Institutionalizing Responsible Corporate Citizenship in Development Financing Institutions” was successfully conducted from March 27-29, 2012 in Manila, Philippines under the auspices of the World Federation of Development Financing Institutions (WFDFI) whose current Secretariat is ADFIAP. The event was attended by 26 participants from 20 institutions and 14 countries in Africa and the Asia-Pacific region. The program served as a platform for the participants to share country experiences on development finance, corporate governance, corporate social responsibility (CSR) and corporate citizenship (CC).
This program which is under the CIPE grant-funded project called, “Responsible Corporate Citizenship for Development Financing Institutions” aims to promote, develop and institutionalize best principles and practices on how DFIs should actualize their mandate of providing financial and technical assistance for sustainable development. Responsible corporate citizenship in a development finance institution (DFI), or alternately called development bank, is defined as “the governance of its positive impact on the economy, society and the environment through its operations, products or services, and through its interaction with key stakeholders such as its funders, employees and clients.” This actuation forms the crucial basis for DFIs to be responsible corporate citizens without which DFIs have little else to offer to society over the longer term.
The Manila workshop was the culminating activity for the project and an occasion to launch the “Corporate Citizenship Manual for DFIs”, a toolkit to facilitate the design and implementation of corporate citizenship in a DFI which can also be adopted by other financial institutions such as commercial banks. The manual recommends a framework for the integration and institutionalization of corporate citizenship that is premised on good governance and corporate social responsibility. As financial intermediaries, DFIs, through this toolkit, can develop good corporate citizenship guidelines and embed them in their operations and lending decisions.
The workshop also afforded the participants an opportunity to familiarize themselves with the current governance, CSR and CC practices and policies of the Land Bank of the Philippines, the Development Bank of the Philippines, Planters Development Bank, People’s Credit and Finance Corporation as well as corporate foundations, namely the United Coconut Planters Bank-CIIF Finance and Development Corporation Foundation, Inc, and Team Energy Foundation, Inc Dr. Cesar Saldaña, President, PSR Consulting, Inc. and ADFIAP Adviser on Governance and Risk Management acted as the main resource person and program coordinator.
Most of the financial institutions attending already have their own CSR programs. However, due to the lack of understanding of the meaning and scope of CSR, they were not categorized as such. The seminar, in a way, provided the participants broader understanding about the CSR concept and helped them identify existing activities of their institutions that belong in this category. For those DFIs without CSR activities in place, the workshop helped them realize the importance of CSR to provide balance in the overall functions and responsibilities of their respective institutions towards their clients and their community.
The participation of representatives from different countries has widened the participants’ scope of learning and appreciation about the subject.
ADFIAP, through its consulting and advisory group, ADFIAP Consulting (AC), has organized successfully the APEC-supported operational dialogue on innovative financial inclusion policies with the theme, “Accelerating Financial Inclusion in Asia and the Pacific” on September 15, 2011 in Honolulu , Hawaii . The event brought together 24 policy makers, regulatory officials and experts on financial inclusion from 10 APEC member-economies. ADFIAP acted as technical coordinator and content provider for the event on behalf of the Philippine Department of Finance which is the project’s overseer.
The conference was undertaken to further advance the new inclusive growth agenda launched during 17thAPEC Economic Leaders’ Meeting in Singapore in November 2009, focused on the implementation of the leaders’ instructions to build capacity and map strategies and programs related to the agenda. The dialogue offered an opportunity in promoting inclusive finance given that large segments of the region’s economies still lack access to financial services. Among the topics discussed were national strategy and regulatory framework for effective financial inclusion, micro, small and medium enterprises (MSME) access to finance, micro-insurance, movable asset registry, credit information bureau and client protection.
The conference, which included a workshop, also afforded the participants the opportunity to share each other’s country experiences and to formulate a draft financial inclusion definition and action plan that will accelerate APEC’s agenda in member-economies. The presentation materials can be download below.
Accelerating Financial Inclusion in Asia and the Pacific: An Operational Dialogue on Innovative Financial Inclusion Policies
Financial Inclusion Consumer Protection in the Philippines
Registry for Movable Assets: Easing SME Access to Credit
Crafting Frameworks for Effective Financial Inclusion: The Philippine Experience
Financial Inclusion and Microinsurance
Peruvian Credit Information Registry (CIR) & Financial Inclusion
ADFIAP and Land Bank of the Philippines held a briefing on sustainability reporting using the Global Reporting Initiative (GRI) and its guidelines on May 4, 2011 at the Bank’s headquarters in Malate, Manila, Philippines.
Delegates attending the CEO Forum VIII (please see related story) held in Thimpu, Bhutan, expressed interest to learn more and eventually go into sustainability reporting after attending the special session on sustainability reporting conducted by Mr. Enrique Florencio, ADFIAP’s Head of Knowledge Management Unit and Sustainability Officer. Mr. Enrique Florencio is a Certified Sustainability Assurance Practitioner.
During the special session, Mr. Florencio discussed the latest trends as well as the basic steps or processes on sustainability reporting, using the Global Reporting Initiative (GRI) reporting framework. The GRI is a network-based organization that has pioneered the development of the world’s most widely used sustainability reporting framework. Mr. Florencio pointed out the importance of reporting using the triple bottomline or ESG in the form of sustainability strategy, with sustainability reporting and management integrated into the core business operations and development missions.
For interest on how ADFIAP can assist in producing your sustainability report using the GRI guidelines, please contact the ADFIAP Secretariat at firstname.lastname@example.org