PM: Embracing ESG needs mindset change, not just regulatory compliance


Prime Minister Datuk Seri Anwar Ibrahim launching the Asia ESG Positive Impact Consortium in Kuala Lumpur, June 20, 2024. Joining him are (from left) Star Media Group (SMG) chief executive officer Chan Seng Fatt, Philippine Daily Inquirer president and chief executive officer Rudyard Arbolado, Philippine ambassador to Malaysia Maria Angela Abrera Ponce, Natural Resources and Environmental Sustainability Minister Nik Nazmi Nik Ahmad, SMG chairman Tan Sri Wong Foon Meng, Indonesian ambassador to Malaysia Datuk Indera Hermono, KG Media chief executive officer Andy Budiman, and Sime Darby Property group managing director Datuk Azmir Merican. — GLENN GUAN/The Star

KUALA LUMPUR: Embracing environmental, social and governance (ESG) practices requires a shift in mindset and is more than just complying with regulations, says Prime Minister Datuk Seri Anwar Ibrahim.

According to Anwar, it is crucial to recognise that achieving net zero carbon emissions requires a collaborative effort involving the government, the private sector and Malaysians themselves.

 "This is where I believe the formation of the Asia ESG Positive Impact Consortium (A-Epic) is timely where it can leverage the prowess of three media groups to facilitate collaborative action between stakeholders, businesses and the public.

"Here, we ought to remember that embracing ESG practices transcends mere regulatory compliance; it necessitates a shift in mindset to embrace the principles of environmental stewardship, social responsibility and governance excellence," he said in his keynote address at the launch of A-Epic on Friday (June 21).

Anwar urged all stakeholders, including businesses, civil society and individuals, to actively participate in achieving a sustainable and secure future for the next generation.

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"Together, we can create a powerful synergy that drives meaningful change.

"Let us embark on this journey with a shared sense of purpose and optimism," he said.

Anwar added that the world is facing many environmental challenges such as higher temperatures, severe storms and increased droughts.

In response, many governments in the world have agreed to cut emissions by using various measures to foster green innovation, catalyse sustainable economies and chart courses towards renewable energy transitions.

"In Malaysia, we have taken a progressive stance towards decarbonisation and the larger sustainability agenda.

"In fact, the concept of Madani, the country’s ethos for development, places ‘sustainability’ as one of its seven core tenets," he pointed out.

Anwar said Putrajaya is committed to embedding ESG principles in its governance and to ensure a sustainable and prosperous future for the next generation.

He also said the government has implemented various multifaceted policies aimed at reducing carbon emissions, promoting social equity, creating new growth opportunities in the green economy and ensuring transparent governance.

"To this effect, substantial funds have been allocated for renewable energy, sustainable agriculture and green transportation, signalling the government’s commitment to reducing the country’s carbon footprint and promoting sustainable practices," he added.

A-Epic was launched by Star Media Group, Media Group of Kompas Gramedia (KG Media) and the Inquirer Group of Companies at the Sime Darby Convention Centre.

This cross-border alliance aims to collectively impact 123 million people across the region.

Also present were Natural Resources and Environmental Sustainability Minister Nik Nazmi Nik Ahmad, KG Media chief executive officer Andy Budiman, Philippine Daily Inquirer president and chief executive officer Rudyard Arbolado.

Indonesian Ambassador to Malaysia Datuk Hermono and the Philippines' Ambassador to Malaysia Maria Angela Abrera Ponce were also in attendance.

Star Media Group was represented by chairman Tan Sri Wong Foon Meng, group chief executive officer Chan Seng Fatt, chief business officer Lydia Wang and chief content officer Datin Paduka Esther Ng.

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