SHANGHAI, Sept. 23, 2021 /PRNewswire/ -- Lufax Holding Ltd ("Lufax" or the "Company") ( NYSE: LU), a leading technology-empowered personal financial services platform in China, today released its first Environmental, Social and Governance (ESG) report. The report highlights the Company's long-term commitment to inclusive finance, improving access to financial services for small and micro business owners, alleviating rural poverty, supporting the real economy and other societal benefits through FinTech innovations.
The report provides a look at the Company's ESG performance for 2020 and offers a comprehensive overview of its commitment to making retail borrowing and wealth management easier, safer and more efficient. Of the many areas covered in the report, a few to highlight include achievements in corporate governance, providing inclusive financing to small and micro businesses, strengthening consumer protections, contributing to poverty alleviation and rural revitalization, and promoting green finance.
"In this report, we present our sustainability achievements and express our determination to developing long-term value," said Guangheng Ji, Chairman of Lufax Holding. "Looking ahead, Lufax Holding will continue to stay ahead of the curve and capture emerging opportunities. With positive financial services as the starting point, we will innovate and drive forward. We will bolster inclusive finance, support the wider economy, fulfil our corporate responsibilities and create our own sustainability path."
"Our goal is to become a best-practice benchmark for compliance and governance among overseas-listed Chinese companies," commented Ji.
Among the many focus areas addressed in the ESG report, key highlights from the past year include the following:
Providing inclusive financing to small and micro businesses
Small and micro businesses contribute significantly to economic and social development. However, they usually face financing difficulties in their development process, especially in 2020 as the COVID-19 pandemic posed unprecedented challenges across the world. Making retail borrowing easier, safer, and more efficient is at the very core of Lufax's mission. As part of the Company's commitment to providing convenient financial services for small and micro business owners, in 2020 Lufax's retail credit facilitation platform subsidiary Ping An Puhui ("Puhui") set up a special loan channel during the pandemic to provide affected companies and individuals with loans for small and micro businesses. This initiative eased issues caused by capital shortages and limited loan channels due to the pandemic.
As of 2020, Lufax has helped more than 1.24 million small and micro businesses and provided inclusive finance for 2.76 million people. By the end of the year, Lufax's total inclusive credit reached RMB 564.961 billion, with its balance of inclusive credit loans reaching RMB 545.149 billion.
Supporting public welfare and revitalizing the rural economy
As underscored in the ESG report, Lufax is committed to alleviating poverty by offering products and services tailored to empower vulnerable groups for long-term rural revitalization. Lufax's subsidiary Puhui has launched innovative projects to improve access to financing for vulnerable groups in less developed regions. Initiatives on improving rural women's employment and entrepreneurship include a program providing preferential agricultural loans to female entrepreneurs in less developed regions. Puhui also founded a special "Mom's Sewing" program that provides sewing machines, production materials and social connections to help local women in Liangshan prefecture monetize traditional handicrafts. Puhui also focused on rural revitalization in its preferential agricultural loans project that provides diversified, affordable, and convenient loan services for rural entrepreneurs. Additionally, Puhui encourages rural revitalization through its "New Farmers for Poverty Alleviation" project, which targets younger talented farmers who want to return to and build their hometowns by starting businesses. Under this program, Puhui offers emerging agricultural technology to support sustainable development. These projects have injected new momentum into rural economic and industrial development in impoverished areas and support rural revitalization.
At present, Puhui has agricultural and rural initiatives in 13 provinces and cities, covering planting, animal husbandry, forestry, fishery and other specialties. By the end of 2020, Puhui had provided assistance funds worth more than RMB 123 million to nearly 300 rural cooperatives and entrepreneurs, directly supporting more than 800 financially distressed households.
Moreover, Lufax and the China Foundation for Poverty Alleviation (CFPA) jointly launched "Big Country, Small Towns", a poverty alleviation plan designed to raise the industrial development level of villages and towns to improve local public welfare and income levels. By combining the customer resource advantages gathered by Lufax's online wealth management platform with the public smart financial system, the Company has created a series of measures to alleviate poverty, improve local career prospects for younger generations, and improve environmental protection.
Alongside local industries, Lufax has identified a path for people to rise out of poverty and obtain wealth by developing an "Industry + Ecology" sustainable development model that lays a solid foundation for reducing poverty. By focusing on initiatives that provide affordable financing to rural communities instead of donations, Lufax is investing in long-term rural development and sustainability.
Developing green finance to support carbon neutrality
To support national and international carbon neutrality goals, Lufax has also set up a green finance office to drive its business in a greener way, support the development of green finance and create a low-carbon model for financial institutions. As highlighted in the ESG report, Lufax will continue to support the development of green finance by improving access to green financial products and services as well as introducing more green funds and net worth products like the ESG-related products jointly offered with "Lu Funds." Online financial services like Lufax's "Wealth Cloud" can offer a lower carbon footprint future for financial services. With its paperless system, "Wealth Cloud" already has saved 64.884 tons of paper compared to traditional brick and mortar systems. By continuing to replace traditional offline marketing approaches with environmentally conscious cloud-based alternatives, Lufax hopes to continue its pursuit of green finance and operations.
Enhancing financial service quality through technology
Lufax has built a thriving and professional team providing services for small and micro business owners and individuals with financing needs all over the country by combining online and offline services. In addition, the Lufax service team also helps customers improve their financial knowledge in key areas such as financing, planning, compliance of financial products, and avoiding investment traps.
Lufax has leveraged its artificial intelligence (AI) technologies to improve customer experience and protect consumer rights and interests with an AI-backed customer service platform. Customers may submit their requests and inquiries to both AI robots and human agents over the phone, online or on the mobile app. The AI customer service offers access to financial education and customer service around-the-clock and has achieved an intelligent recognition rate of 99.8% and customer satisfaction rate of 93%, helping to quickly resolve customer issues or inquiries. With the support of the AI customer service platform, Lufax customer service agents have also achieved a high level of customer satisfaction, with an answering rate of 98% and an on-the-spot settlement rate of 95%.
Lufax Holding's ESG report is formulated in accordance with the Environmental, Social and Governance Reporting Guide of the Main Board Listing Rules of the Stock Exchange of Hong Kong Limited ("HKEx") and the Global Reporting Initiative sustainability reporting standards (GRI Standards). To learn more about Lufax's ESG efforts and to view the report in full, please visit https://ir.lufaxholding.com/files/doc_downloads/2021/2021-9-18-ESG.pdf
About Lufax Holding Ltd
Lufax Holding Ltd is a leading technology-empowered personal financial services platform in China. Lufax Holding Ltd primarily utilizes its customer-centric product offerings and offline-to-online channels to provide retail credit facilitation services to small business owners and salaried workers in China as well as tailor-made wealth management solutions to China's rapidly growing middle class. The Company has implemented a unique, capital-light, hub-and-spoke business model combining purpose-built technology applications, extensive data, and financial services expertise to effectively facilitate the right products to the right customers. For more information, please visit www.lufaxholding.com.
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