Honouring businesses that uphold ESG

At the ESG PIA 2022 awards held at the M Resort & Hotel Kuala Lumpur on June 8 this year: (front row, from left) Star Media Group Berhad chief business officer Lydia Wang, OCBC Bank (Malaysia) Berhad chief executive officer Tan Chor Sen, Most Outstanding ESG Initiative (Large) winner Heineken Malaysia Berhad corporate affairs and legal director Renuka Indrarajah, NRECC Ministry deputy secretary-general (energy sector) Datuk Mohamad Razif Abd Mubin, Most Outstanding ESG Initiative (SME/Mid) winner Geomax Rubber Innovative Products Sdn Bhd director Steven Ng Yong Beng, Star Media Group Berhad chief executive officer Alex Yeow and Telekom Malaysia chief corporate and regulatory officer Tengku Muneer Tengku Muzani, with other award winners.

ESG Positive Impact Awards 2023 calls for companies that prioritise people and planet beyond profitability

IN the evolving landscape of corporate Malaysia, the success of a business has expanded beyond the confines of revenue – into the realms of people, planet and profit (3Ps).

This shift signifies a transition from traditional profit-centric models to a more holistic approach that values environmental, social and governance (ESG) considerations.

Aiding this transformation, awards have emerged as important catalysts and industry benchmarks, infusing momentum into the journey of corporate sustainability where the 3Ps are not mutually exclusive.

The inaugural Star Media Group (SMG) ESG Positive Impact Awards (ESG PIA) 2022 not only acknowledged enterprises that have integrated ESG principles into their core strategies but also created a more comprehensive measure of success.

By doing so, the ESG PIA amplifies the influence and importance of the 3Ps in the corporate realm, nurturing an environment where businesses proactively align with values that prioritise societal welfare, environmental stewardship and financial viability.

Representatives from 100 participating companies at the ESG PIA 2022 gala night held at the grand ballroom of M Resort & Hotel Kuala Lumpur.Representatives from 100 participating companies at the ESG PIA 2022 gala night held at the grand ballroom of M Resort & Hotel Kuala Lumpur.

As organisations witness their counterparts being awarded for their ESG endeavours, a collective aspiration to attain similar recognition materialises – generating momentum for sustainable change.

“In recent years, we have seen a rise in companies embracing and embedding sustainability in their business strategy, which in turn has accelerated progress on commitments towards a sustainable future,” says SMG group chief executive officer Alex Yeow.

“Given SMG’s unique advantage, we continue to position ourselves as an effective enabler that promotes the adoption of the corporate sustainability agenda while helping organisations to pursue their ESG goals.

“Through the ESG PIA, we are encouraging corporate Malaysia to not only participate, but also to understand the immense potential it brings to their company, the people and the nation as a whole,” says Yeow.

Setting the standard

Awards like the ESG PIA deepen the corporate consciousness regarding the importance of the 3Ps in Malaysia. Their existence signifies a shift in the narrative of achievement, underscoring that profit is no longer the sole arbiter of accomplishment.

Instead, awards such as this emphasise that businesses must stand accountable for their impact on people’s lives, the planet’s health, and their financial bottom line.

Looking towards the next awards season as the supporting ministry, Natural Resources, Environment and Climate Change (NRECC) Minister Nik Nazmi Nik Ahmad tells The Star: “To address climate change systematically, Malaysia is developing targeted action-based national policies and a robust regulatory framework to chart a clear path towards fulfilling our climate change commitments and to strengthen existing climate change governance in Malaysia.

“Therefore, I would like to see public and private sector players who have contributed to the government’s strategic intent to be recognised for the effort that they have put in. I trust that such efforts shall present the country with new economic opportunities,” he says.

The second year of ESG PIA underscores this path, indicative of the demand for holistic values embodied by the 3Ps.

Eye on decarbonisation

Central to the accomplishments of the ESG PIA is the unwavering support of sponsors, with OCBC Bank (Malaysia) Bhd leading the way.

As the main sponsor, the bank’s commitment to sustainability resonates deeply with the ethos of ESG PIA, as OCBC Bank actively integrates environmental, social and governance considerations into its operations.

Through its sustainable financing and investment initiatives, OCBC Bank exemplifies the power of financial institutions to drive positive change within the corporate landscape.

“We are delighted to partner with Star Media Group for the second consecutive year following the success of the inaugural ESG Positive Impact Awards,” shares OCBC Bank (Malaysia) Berhad chief executive officer Tan Chor Sen.

“Our long-term quest, through these awards, is to steer a larger scale and longer-term conversation on what responsible investments look like – both for now, and beyond.

“As more data about successful ESG practices become available, we are keen to promote an open exchange of best practices and spur greater innovation across industries, no matter the size of the company.

“As we forge ahead, we will be looking to consider decarbonisation efforts even more fully in the work of aspirants to the awards,” he emphasises.

“We hope to see a greater number of participants take part this year so that, with a wider pool, the conversation becomes even richer.

“We are also working closely with SMG to establish learning platforms for past winners to share their experiences and build a community for thought leadership.

“We hope that active engagement with the awards aspirants will ensure their stories are heard for the benefit of others and affirmation to them.

“By bringing the conversation to the table through a recognition of the exemplars of sustainability, we believe the future of the nation’s ESG efforts are bright.

“On our part, we will continue to actively lead by example by staying true to our own sustainable financing and net zero goals, while supporting those who are looking to transition to sustainable practices,” says Tan.

Actions matter

Regardless of whether you are a global conglomerate or a local start-up, your actions matter.

By aligning profit with purpose, companies are not only ensuring their future but also contributing to a world where progress is accessible to all.

The ESG Positive Impact Awards is organised by Star Media Group Bhd, with OCBC Bank (Malaysia) Bhd as main sponsor.

Ernst & Young is the adviser of the awards, while working partners include:

> ABAC Centre of Excellence

> Business Council for Sustainable Development (BCSD) Malaysia

> Green Growth Asia Foundation

> Malaysian Recycling Alliance (MAREA)

> Malaysia Green Building Council

> Malaysian Green Tech and Climate Change Centre

> Malaysian Institute of Corporate Governance

> Malaysian Institute for Economic Research (MIER)

> Jeffrey Sachs Centre

> Sustainable Development Solutions Network (SDSN)

> Malaysian Investment Development Authority (MIDA)

> Malaysian Research Accelerator for Technology and Innovation (MRANTI).

Submit now for the upcoming ESG Positive Impact Awards. To find out more, go to bit.ly/ESGPIA_23. For more insights into the world of ESG, visit bit.ly/ESGIssue to view and download the monthly StarESG pullouts.

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