In 2019, Landsbankinn ranked 6th out of 376 banks in the ESG rating of Sustainalytics, developed expertise in green bonds, entered into a collaborative effort to develop a method to measure the carbon emissions of financial undertakings and signed new Principles for Responsible Banking.
Landsbankinn's Report on Social Responsibility is published annually in accordance with principles of the Global Reporting Initiative (GRI). This year’s report will be published to the Bank’s website no later than 27 March. The report also functions as a Communication of Progress report to the UN Global Compact.
The report contains comparable information year-over-year. It is comprehensive and has been recognised as the best CSR report of the year by Festa, Excellence Iceland and the Iceland Chamber of Commerce. The report addresses the corporate social responsibility projects the Bank is working on and its policy on social responsibility and social performance indicators. The text endeavours to provide an insight into successful accomplishments and pin-point room for improvement.
The Bank has been a signatory of the UN's Global Compact since 2006. The UN Global Compact is a joint venture by the UN and the private sector to align business operations with the UN's principles. The objective is to encourage businesses to actively work according to the guidelines of corporate social responsibility. Landsbankinn was one of the founding members of Festa, Centre for Corporate Social Responsibility, in 2011 and of IcelandSIF, a forum for sustainable investment, in 2017.
Landsbankinn's policy on responsible investments reflects work practices that have been shaped in recent years, as well as the challenges the future holds. The next steps for Landsbankinn will include integrating ESG issues in the process of investment decisions in a structured manner, both as relates to listed and unlisted equities and bonds.
In July 2019, Reitun ehf., Landsbankinn and Landsbréf signed a service agreement providing for Landsbankinn and Landsbréf to obtain ESG ratings for issuers of equities and bonds in portfolios under management by the latter two companies. This agreement takes the next step in introducing procedures for responsible investing, continuing along the path which the Bank and its subsidiary Landsbréf have set for themselves in recent years.
Landsbankinn became a member of the United Nations Principles for Responsible Investment (UN PRI) in early 2013. Landsbankinn's policy on responsible investment is based on the guidelines set by UN PRI. Members of UN PRI oblige themselves to publish a Communication of Progress report on their adherence to the guidelines and the Bank has so in recent years.
Landsbankinn Economic Research has in the past couple of years gathered strategic information about the operation of listed companies with regard for sustainability and social responsibility. This work is based on a standardized questionnaire that pertains to the main elements of ESG factors. The questionnaire represents Landsbankinn's first steps to gathering information about how listed companies approach these matters. Responses to the questionnaire were made available to investors via Economic Research's website in 2017. To date, the responses are only for the attention of investors and the department does not evaluate the answers. In the long term, the aim is to give more weight to these issues in the evaluation of investment opportunities. The aim is to implement social responsibility principles in general analysis work in the future, in line with the Bank's obligations under the tenets of responsible investment.
In 2015, Landsbankinn participated in the climate change project of Festa and the City of Reykjavík along with 102 other companies. The project was part of an action plan set in relation to the Paris summit on climate change and entails that the companies oblige themselves to set goals and action plans for social responsibility for the next 10 years. Landsbankinn is currently in the process of reassessing and sharpening its focus.
Concerted efforts have been made to implement waste sorting in all Landsbankinn workplaces. This has been accomplished at headquarters and in all branches in the capital area, as well as in the Suðurnes peninsula, South and West Iceland. In 2019 work finished in implementing waste sorting in branches and outlets in North Iceland. The ratio of sorted waste keeps increasing and the goal is to sort almost all waste produced by Landsbankinn in four years.
Landsbankinn is working to install LED lights throughout the its facilities. The Bank has greatly reduced its electricity usage in recent years. Environmental issues are discussed in more detail in Landsbankinn´s CSR report.
In March 2019, Landsbankinn received legally required equal pay certification and has since operated in accordance with a certified equal pay system. Implementation of an equal pay standard at Landsbankinn in fact means that the Bank has enacted a control system which ensures that handling and decisions about wages is based on objective factors, free of gender-based discrimination. Landsbankinn has long placed a great deal of emphasis on equality, see the chapter on human resources.