It’s been a busy first quarter for Robeco’s Active Ownership team, led by the launch of our engagement themes for 2019.
An important element of active ownership is promoting strong corporate governance, backed by engagement and voting. In February, the team actively participated at the International Corporate Governance Network (ICGN) conference in Amsterdam, where best practices were exchanged with investors and academics from around the globe.
Robeco also supported a letter to mining companies urging them to provide specific disclosure on their facilities for tailings – the materials left over after separating the valuable metal from its leftovers. Robeco has joined a global group of investors representing USD 10.3 trillion in assets under management to improve disclosure in the mining industry following a tailings dam breach in Brazil.
The quarter also saw the official launch of an engagement program with palm oil producers that aims to raise the number of plantations that are certified by the Round Table on Sustainable Palm Oil. In March, Robeco published a position paper on the challenges faced by the industry and our approach towards palm oil companies.
Palm oil is one of four engagement themes this year, along with addressing single-use plastic, the social impact of artificial intelligence, and digitalizing health care to reduce its costs.