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The Group’s new strategy is aligned with our sustainability commitments. Generali has undertaken to increase premiums from social and green products by 7%-9% and allocate € 4.5 billion for green and sustainable investments by the end of 2021.
Transition towards a low environmental impact company
As stated in our climate change strategy approved by the Board of Directors in February 2018 and explained in more detail in the technical note published by the Group in November 2018, our commitment calls for specific actions with regard to the direct impact of our activities as well as investments and underwriting, and identifies stakeholder dialogue and engagement as the instruments to support our transition.
With respect to investments, as already announced, the Group has suspended all new investments in companies linked to the coal sector. As regards its existing exposure, estimated at around € 2 billion at the start of 2018, Generali is completing the disposal of its equity investments by the planned deadline of April 2019 and gradually disinvesting from bonds, by holding them to maturity and/or assessing the possibility of disposing of them before they mature if market conditions are favourable.
In terms of green and sustainable investments, the internally planned objectives of the 2018 investment plan were successfully met. As expected, the Group decided to revise its initial commitment of € 3.5 billion in new investments by the end of 2020 up to € 4.5 billion by the end of 2021.
In terms of underwriting, in 2018 we did not increase our minimal insurance exposure to coal-related businesses, which represent roughly 0.1% of all P&C premiums, also thanks to our commitment not to insure any new coal customer or any new mine or coal-fuelled power plant construction.
With reference to the renewable energy sector, in which Generali already has a strong presence, the Group is defining concrete actions to transfer knowledge and best practices in all geographical areas. It is also considering the possibility of defining a dedicated industrial practice.
As regards the process of engagement of counterparties associated with the coal sector in countries which are highly dependent on coal, in line with the Just Transition principles, we involved the 6 companies to which the Group has exposure, which are part of the 120 companies identified as Top Coal Plant Developers by the Urgewald organization and currently taken as a reference. We are evaluating their transition plans to decide whether to continue or suspend the business.
In 2018, purchased renewable energy was equal to 88% of the total acquired energy.
Insofar as our public commitment goes, in 2018 we declared our support for the Task Force on Climate-related Financial Disclosure (TCFD) and launched an internal process for the management of key aspects and the development of a reporting framework. We also participate in the UNEP FI Principles for Sustainable Insurance (PSI) work group on the implementation of the TCFD Recommendations by insurers and the Investor Leadership Network, promoted as part of the G7 Investor Global Initiatives, in which we also dig deep into the topic of climate change with the main financial sector operators.
The Group’s new strategy features a considerable sustainability component amongst its key initiatives:
Generali will create a distinctive offer dedicated to responsible consumers who want to have a positive impact on the environment and society. The offer will include social and green products and sustainable investments to meet the expectations and satisfy the consumption choices of the consumers of today and tomorrow. We are committed to promoting responsible behaviours by engaging and training our sales channels.
We have already identified specific products which, given the type of customer or due to their promotion of responsible behaviours or based on provided coverage, meet specific social and environmental needs.
EnterPrize is an initiative based on our successful experience with Entrepreneur d’Avenir in France and PMIWelfare Index in Italy. In line with our strategic focus on SMEs, Generali will create a prize at domestic and international level for the most sustainable SMEs based on their performance with respect to environmental and social matters, to boost awareness of the competitive advantage that sustainability can provide, with the ultimate goal of contributing towards building a more resilient economy.
Thanks to this prize, it will be possible for SMEs to increase their knowledge of sustainability and competitiveness in general, while also gaining international visibility and improving their reputation amongst their main stakeholders.
The Human Safety Net
The Human Safety Net was launched in 2017 with a view - provided in internal guidelines - to focusing on a smaller number of more similar and impactful initiatives for the communities where the Group operates compared to the past. It aims to activate both financial and technical resources, as well as the network of people and the skills of Generali’s employees and agents to meet shared goals, favouring contact with local communities and making lasting change in the lives of recipients.
Investing - within a context in which UNICEF has reported that more than 250 million children worldwide risk not reaching their development potential - in courses and activities to support good parenting practices in families at risk of social exclusion with the aim of offering treatments and adequate stimuli for the cognitive, motor and social growth of children between 0 and 6 years, in line with the Nurturing Care Framework, an international document that promotes the development of early childhood.
For Refugee Start-ups
Offering to those who have received refugee status - more than 2.3 million have arrived in Europe since 2015 - the tools they need to launch independent businesses enabling them and their families to create new livelihoods, contribute to the local economy and thus regain their dignity as well as encourage social integration.
Contributing to combatting neonatal asphyxia, a condition that impacts almost one million newborns at the moment of birth every year all over the world, and can cause serious and permanent injury to the child’s brain.
The Human Safety Net is active through three programmes with the shared mission of freeing the potential of disadvantaged people to enable them to improve the living conditions of their families and communities, by working alongside partners, like local social businesses and non-governmental organizations.
Every country and business unit of the Group can choose to participate in one of these three programmes, identifying, conducting due diligence on and selecting one or more partners to directly manage activities with beneficiaries.
All of the activities and the results achieved are monitored through a measurement system based on the London Benchmarking Group’s international standard.
In the coming three years, our ambition is to further extend The Human Safety Net through active engagement of employees and agents, including volunteering activities, as well as of customers and other third-party organizations that share its approach and mission.
15 Total emissions refer to 42% of the total Group employees in the following countries: Austria, France, Germany, Italy, Czech Republic, Spain and Switzerland. They are calculated according to the location-based method; they are also discolsed according to the market-based method on our website.