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Human rights influence on investors

Business and Human Rights Business and Human Rights
‘Human rights in investment’ cover - on blackboard with business flowcharts

A new report detailing the strong business case for the financial services industry to consider human rights in their investment decisions will be released today, as investors around the globe become more focussed on responsible investing.

Human rights in investment: The value of considering human rights in ESG due diligence by the Australian Human Rights Commission and EY, debunks the myth that human rights and investment practices are incompatible.

“Human rights, just as any other aspect of business, can increase the value of an organisation if managed appropriately,” said Commission President, Professor Gillian Triggs.

We know that 80% of Australian investors base their decisions on non-financial factors and this is in line with a global movement of integrating environment, social and governance (ESG) considerations into their financial decisions.

“Attracting and maintaining investors in our ever-increasingly empowered market place is a challenge. But including human rights principles in investment and business structures is not only good for the bottom line, it can avoid reputational damage, lawsuits and poor financial returns,” said Professor Triggs.

The report looks at how the interpretation of fiduciary duties has evolved over time clarifying the pertinence of considering human rights and other ESG matters that will influence corporate value over the long term.

“Human rights will become an increasingly universal benchmark for assessing the capacity of an investee to maintain their social license into the future,” said Adam Carrel, EY Climate Change and Sustainability Services’ Sydney Leader and Partner.

The full report is available here: https://www.humanrights.gov.au/human-rights-investment-2017

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