Accordingly, NILGOSC believes that engagement with companies is a key part of any responsible investment strategy. NILGOSC requires its active investment managers to monitor best practice in this area and ensure that ESG considerations, where relevant, are taken into account in the investment management process. All active fund managers are instructed to engage, on NILGOSC’s behalf, with those companies where ESG policies fall short of acceptable standards and where this is likely to have a detrimental effect on the long-term value of the company.
Responsible ownership and engagement
NILGOSC also engages directly the companies in which it invests. In cases where NILGOSC intends to, or has, voted against resolutions at a UK or European-listed company’s Annual General Meeting (AGM), NILGOSC issues an engagement letter outlining its rationale for doing so. The practice of writing to UK-listed companies in which it held shares commenced in 2010, and in January 2015, coverage expanded to European-listed companies as well. Where possible, NILGOSC aims to write to these companies in advance of the AGMs to make engagement as effective as possible.
NILGOSC also believes that collaborative engagement is a key part of any responsible investment strategy and will seek to work collectively with other likeminded investors in order to maximise its influence on individual companies. NILGOSC is aware that it is just a small voice, and one way to amplify that voice is to collaborate with other likeminded investors and groups:
|UN Principles of Responsible Investment (PRI) |
|An international network of investors working together to implement six aspirational ESG principles|
|CDP (formerly the Carbon Disclosure Project)|
|A not-for-profit charity that runs the global disclosure system for reporting and managing environmental impacts|
|Climate Action 100+|
(Founder supporter signatory)
|An investor-led initiative focusing on 167 of the world’s largest greenhouse gas emitters|
|Institutional Investors Group on Climate Change (IIGCC)||European membership body for investor collaboration on Climate Change|
|UK Pension Scheme Responsible Investment Roundtable||Collective group of public and private sector UK pension funds who work together to promote responsible investment|
|Task Force on Climate-related Financial Disclosures (TCFD)|
(Since June 2020)
|A working group tasked with creating a set of comparable and consistent disclosures to demonstrate climate change resilience|
|Occupational Pensions Stewardship Council (OPSC)|
|A dedicated council of UK pension schemes to promote and facilitate high standards of stewardship|
Transparency and accountability are key to good governance. In order to publicly demonstrate its commitment to responsible investment practices, NILGOSC report annually against a number of frameworks:
Since commencing support of the PRI in 2007, NILGOSC has reported on its implementation of the principles through mandatory annual reporting. The reporting framework was overhauled by the PRI in 2020. Further changes have been made to the reporting framework; the next iteration of which was released in 2023 for signatories’ completion. The framework is designed to assess an organisation’s overarching approach to responsible investment, the integration of responsible investment in manager selection, appointment and monitoring, and engagement across asset classes.
NILGOSC’s 2020 reports for the year ended 31 March 2019 demonstrated that NILGOSC continued to perform either in line with or above the median of signatory scores in each of the areas assessed: receiving an A banding for eight of the modules; and a B for the ninth. The reports are available for review:
NILGOSC actively supports the Task Force on Climate-related Financial Disclosures (TCFD) recommendations and was added to the official list of supporters in June 2020. In alignment with the recommendations, NILGOSC produced its second Climate-related Disclosures Report for the year ended 31 March 2022. The report is available to review:
The FRC UK Stewardship Code was substantially revised in 2019 and the new UK Stewardship Code 2020 took effect from January 2020. NILGOSC supports the principles set out in the Stewardship Code and seeks to promote these principles both directly and indirectly through the mandates given to its investment managers. Following submission of its first Stewardship Report, NILGOSC was successful in being listed as a signatory to the UK Stewardship Code in September 2022. In order to remain a signatory, NILGOSC prepared its second annual Stewardship Report (covering the 12 month-period ending 30 June 2022) and submitted it to the FRC for review in May 2023. NILGOSC was pleased to be informed in August 2023, that it continued to meet the FRC’s expected standard of reporting and it will continue to be listed as a signatory to the UK Stewardship Code.
NILGOSC’s report is available to review:
NILGOSC will exercise its voting rights, if possible, at all company meetings within its actively managed equity portfolios. Peak voting season runs from April to June, and stewardship activity is reported for the 12 months to 30 June each year. Annual Voting information is available for review, as well as detailed monthly disclosures of votes cast, released on a quarterly basis: