As ESG gains popularity against background of China’s goal to achieve carbon neutrality by 2060, more Chinese citizens show an interest in sustainable investing.
A survey by Fidelity International found that 71% of mainland Chinese investors living in the nine cities of the Guangdong-Hong Kong-Macau GBA, with an average annual income of RMB132,541 ($1,9512), recognise the importance of investing sustainably, while two of three surveyed were interested in leveraging their investments to drive “positive change in the world”.
“This momentum is in line with our observations that Chinese clients’ demand for ESG-related products grew significantly in 2021, and we also believe this prominent trend will continue to accelerate in the future,” said Rajeev Mittal, managing director, Asia Pacific ex-Japan at Fidelity International.
The survey, conducted in January, found that almost 70% of respondents think savers and investors can make a positive impact on the world by selecting new investment and saving opportunities.
A similar percentage of people said that the global volatility and uncertainty in the past 12 months has made them more inclined to save and invest more sustainably.
The top changes which GBA investors want to make are sustainable consumption/behaviour (40%), followed by making businesses sustainable/ethical (34%), and climate change (33%), the survey found.
However, when asked about the top challenges when it comes to sustainable investing, 70% of respondents feel that sustainable investing is subjective, and that there is no definitive agreement on what it means and lacks clear guidelines for investment managers to follow.
Around 69% of respondents are worried that it is impossible to save or invest sustainably and get a good return, while 61% of them think ESG investing is only suitable for rich investors, the study found.
The asset manager noted that after the launch of the cross-boundary Wealth Management Connect scheme in September last year, local investors in the GBA can now access to a wider spectrum of ESG investing products through global asset managers.