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Customer Relations

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● Blueprint of Sustainable Banking Finance

Through the Sustainable Development Committee and the CSR Project Promotion Team, SinoPac Holdings (SPH) has established a Customer Relations task force, which is in charge of planning a blueprint for developing sustainable financial products, promoting responsible investment, and signing and adopting the Equator Principles (EP), so as to promote sustainable development in conjunction with the core financial business, guide funds to target long-term investments and invest in relevant industries that resonate with the United Nations (UN) Sustainable Development Goals.

SPH actively responds to the long-term international trend of financial sustainability and practice Stewardship Principles for Institutional Investors. Bank SinoPac (BSP), SinoPac Securities (SPS), and SinoPac Securities Investment Trust (SinoPac SITC) have signed the compliance statement on the Institutional Investors Stewardship Principles. Moreover, SPH established the basic principles of the SinoPac Holdings Guidelines on Responsible Investment Management in June 2019. Furthermore, BSP is expected to sign the EP before the first quarter of 2020.

In addition, SPH continues to promote sustainable finance with its core businesses. The main sustainable financial products include green bonds, green financing, green investment, and green funds. To promote the development of the green energy industry, SinoPac SITC has actively invested in green-themed related targets and launched the SinoPac China Economic Development Fund to invest in Chinas new energy and green manufacturing in 2012. In addition, in 2017 BSP became the first bank to obtain eligibility to issue green bonds in Taiwan.

Stewardship

BSP, SPS, and SinoPac SITC have all signed the compliance statement on the Stewardship Principles for Institutional Investors to comply with six principles:

  • Establish and disclose stewardship policies
  • Establish and disclose policies on managing conflicts of interest
  • Regularly monitor investee companies
  • Maintain an appropriate dialogue and interaction with investee companies
  • Establish clear voting policies and disclose voting results
  • Periodically disclose to clients or beneficiaries about the status of fulfillment of stewardship responsibilities

Responsible Investment

Formulation of Management Policy

SPH formulated the basic principle of SinoPac Holdings Guidelines on Responsible Investment Management in June 2019 with a reference to the UN Principles for Responsible Investment to incorporate environmental, social, and corporate governance (ESG) issues into the decision-making process regarding investment and asset management. The subsidiaries then established the methodological tools for assessing ESG risks and relevant regulations on responsible investment in accordance with the SinoPac Holdings Guidelines on Responsible Investment Management, the Institutional Investors Stewardship Principles, and the internal investment decision-making process.

Six Principles of the UN PRI:

  • Incorporate ESG factors into investment analysis and decision-maki
  • Be active asset owners and incorporate ESG issues into our ownership policies and practices
  • Seek appropriate disclosure on ESG matters of the entities in which we invest
  • Improve familiarity and promote execution of the Principles within the investment industry
  • Establish cooperation to enhance effectiveness of the Principles
  • Report on activities and progress of the implementation

Scope of Application

The principles apply to SinoPac Holdings and its subsidiaries investment and asset management businesses, including but not limited to the use of funds for listed equity, fixed income, private equity, infrastructure, facility assets, and derivatives; and consulting services.

The Implementation of Management Mechanisms

To implement various ESG management policies, the subsidiaries may establish various management mechanisms based on the regulations in their respective industries, the attributes of the category of their investment products, and their practical operations and continue to strengthen and implement them.

  • To incorporate ESG factors into risk assessment during the investment evaluation process, with a reference to guidelines and standards of relevant organizations and professional organizations, such as the International Finance Corporation (IFC), the World Bank, and the UN. For the investment of high-risk projects, a management-by-exception process may be established by intensifying analyses and explanation, raising the approval level, or actively exercising shareholder activism.
  • Pre-investment assessments can be strengthened by referring to ESG ratings done by professional institutions, constituent stocks of relevant ESG benchmark indexes, or other ESG-related external resources or tools.

  • To exclude involvement in controversial industries such as prostitution, controversial weapons, etc. As for sensitive industries, such as gambling, unhealthy food, toxic radioactive substance, non-medical treatment, harmful human genetic engineering, non-adhesive asbestos fiber and Polychlorinated biphenyls (PCBs) manufacturing, the ESG related risk analysis are clearly illustrated. If we are aware that the ESG risk factors will be further deteriorated, we will avoid investment in those activities as the result.

  • Support theme-based investments that are conducive to sustainability and invest in industries or targets that focus on sustainable developments, for instance, increasing green bond investments.

Reporting and transparency

Detailed information regarding responsible investment is disclosed in the SPH annual CSR Report.

Responsible Lending

Since 2014, BSP has incorporated in its commercial lending policies the assessment metrics adopted from the EP as the evaluation standards for project financing and general corporate financing. Systematic monitoring features have also been added to the credit analysis system to strengthen the tracking of ESG risk factors. In case of negative environmental, social, and corporate governance issues that would inflict sustainability risks on relevant loan borrowers, such information will be retrieved from the system and reflected on the Credit Risk Disclosure Report for risk assessment consideration.

Whether customers are sanctioned parties, involved in activities including money laundering and information terrorizing, or tagged with corporate sustainability risk remarks, such risk factors would be evaluated by means of industry type assessment (AML risk) and ESG risk factor assessment. BSP has established policies based on business types and high-risk industries (such as financing needs are for political or election events, entities operating unlawful business, excessive production capacity, high polluting, high energy consumption, etc.) that restrict financing certain customers and set caps for such financing.

To strengthen the implementation of responsible lending and cover the full scope of the ESG policies, BSP launched the Principles for Responsible Lending Management in 2019, October. It clearly states to avoid controversial industries while sensitive industries are on the watch list that would require extra attention in its lending decision. Other than taking account of the ESG issues into the financing decision-making process, the issue that how customers assess and respond to the opportunities and risks of climate change is also considered. (For example, considering the impact of climate change in the financial performance, as well as the responsive measures.) BSP plans to adopt the Equator Principles by the first quarter of 2020, which further asserts that we will more thoroughly integrate environmental, social, and governance risks in the management of large-scale project finance.  

Due to collaboration with well-recognized credit agencies and the internal on ESG financing decision making, in 2019, July, BSP launched the ESG risk information dashboard and risk rating models. It will integrate with the current financial and credit risk rating in order to assist the financing decision making. Meanwhile, BSP will continue to initiate and implement Green Risk Ratings. Based on clients’ rating results, BSP could offer Green Dividends (e.g. lowering interest rate) to those who have performed satisfactorily under the ESG scope. On the contrary, risk premium could be imposed on those who performed poorly. BSP is determined to lead the funds to flow with social responsibilities, to take leadership in guiding clients to enhance social harmony and to spread positive influence in sustainable financing.

Promoting the ESG Forum

SinoPac Holdings promotes ESG stewardship investment values and improve institutional investors and related personnel of public companies understanding and practices of ESG values. SinoPac Securities began promoting responsible investment in 2016 and it has organized the "ESG Investment Forum" each year. Two large-scale ESG Investment Forums were held in 2018 and SinoPac Securities invited renowned international ESG investment consultants and international asset management companies to share their practical experience. Through the Forum, SinoPac Securities sought to infuse the ultimate goals of environmental protection, social justice, and corporate governance into the capital market and economic activities and improve the international status of the capital market and enterprises of Taiwan.

Sustainable Financial Products and Services

SinoPac Holdings promotes sustainable finance as its core business. The main sustainable financial products include green bonds, green financing, green investment, and green funds. In 2017, Bank SinoPac became the first qualified domestic bank for green bond issuance. It also provided financing to the solar energy industry and the eco-friendly textile industry. SinoPac Venture Capital reduces its impact on the environment by investing in eco-friendly industries. In order to promote the development of domestic energy-saving industries, SinoPac Securities Investment Trust is actively investing green funds, such as China’s new energies and green manufacturing, while issuing SinoPac China Economic Development Fund.

Green Bonds

Bank SinoPac became the first qualified green bond issuer in 2017 and was recognized by the internationally-renowned bond market information platform MTN-i. Advocating the governments green finance policy and following the 5+2 Industrial Transformation Plan, Bank SinoPac helped the green energy technology industry obtain medium- and long-term funds to promote environmental sustainability. Bank SinoPac also dedicated itself to the green bond market. The funds raised by the bonds had been fully injected into the Project by November 29, 2017. The Project is expected to generate approximately 38 million kWh of electricity per year, which would reduce CO2 emissions by 20,000 metric tons per year.

Green Financing

SinoPac Holdings actively develops green financing products and services which currently consist of related green financing services in the solar energy industry and financing for eco-friendly textile industries. SinoPac Holdings uses financing and loans to support the development of related environmentally-friendly industries or green industries in Taiwan.

● Green Energy Financing

Bank SinoPac actively cooperates with the governments renewable energy policy. Since the launch of the Green Energy Financing Project in 2012, Bank SinoPac has committed to the green energy industry supply chain. Adopting a multi-channel promotion model, Bank SinoPac rendered loans and insurance services to companies in the supply chain of the PV industry. Bank SinoPac also works with electric car companies to promote installment loans for small electric cars for corporate use. Bank Sinopac also responded to government policies and worked with local governments in promoting the "Million Solar Roofs Project" by launching the "Solar Power Equipment Financing Project" for households and companies that install solar power equipment. As of the end of 2018, Bank SinoPac has accumulated 1,650 power plants with more than 615MW(Mega Watt) in solar installed capacity across Taiwan. The financing loans provided for solar energy projects reached NT$15.597 billion which grew by 2.2 times from 2017.

In addition, Bank SinoPac won the "Best Green Finance Award" and the "Top Solar Award" in 2018. Bank SinoPac received the Top Solar Award for the third consecutive year and is the only bank in Taiwan that has received this award consecutively.

● Encouraging Eco-Friendly Textile Industries

After the "Paris Agreement" formally came into effect in November 2016, important supply chains in the global economy rushed to grasp business opportunities in the "Green Economy" trend. Renowned international sports brands issued green declarations successively, which were targeted by Taiwanese companies as the green business opportunities. Therefore, they continued to maintain growth in shipments of eco-friendly fiber materials. Bank Sinopac provides textile companies in Taiwan which plan to obtain the textile environmental protection certification and helps them to fulfill green transformation. Approximately 600 textile companies have obtained Bluesign certifications globally and 122 companies in Taiwan have obtained the certifications. As of the end of 2018, Bank SinoPac had provided loans to 27 domestic companies with a financing amount of NT$4.06 billion.

Green Investments

Bank SinoPac included the ESG policy of corporate bond issuers into the assessment items of the Banks bond investments. SinoPac Securities was the lead underwriter of the capital fundraising and IPO of two green energy and environmental protection companies on the TWSE and TPEx. SinoPac Venture Capital invested NT$326 million in green environmental protection industries which was 2.4 times the amount in 2017.

Green Funds

SinoPac Securities Investment Trust invested in green funds for new energy and green production and issued the "SinoPac China Economic Development Fund". The fund size as of the end of 2018 was NT$890 million. It mainly invested in key industries in Chinas Five-Year Plans including new economy, new energy, environmental protection equipment, green production, etc. Pursuant to changes in the environment and market demand, SinoPac Securities Investment Trust shall continue to issue other green finance funds for solar energy, electric vehicles, smart energy conservation, or other industries.

Smart Finance Products and Services

SinoPac Holdings promotes sustainable finance as its core business. The main sustainable financial products include green bonds, green financing, green investment, and green funds. In 2017, Bank SinoPac became the first qualified domestic bank for green bond issuance. It also provided financing to the solar energy industry and the eco-friendly textile industry. SinoPac Venture Capital reduces its impact on the environment by investing in eco-friendly industries. In order to promote the development of domestic energy-saving industries, SinoPac Securities Investment Trust is actively investing green funds, such as China’s new energies and green manufacturing, while issuing SinoPac China Economic Development Fund.

Smart Wholesale Market Transaction Facilitation Platform

ransaction Facilitation Platform" since 2015. The Bank studied the transaction system and operating procedures of wholesale markets in depth and proposed a cooperation plan for the Platform to optimize the functions of the wholesale market. It uses the "Internet", "Internet of Things", "big data", and "cloud technologies" to introduce smart financing which not only simplify existing accounting procedures but also save on manpower expenditures. It promotes the reforms of procedures in the wholesale markets and encourages them to use information technology to streamline the production and sales process and improve efficiency in domestic agricultural product transactions. Since 2016, the coverage rate of the Smart Wholesale Market Transaction Facilitation Platform reached 12.5% in fruits and vegetables markets and 11% in fishery products markets. As of the end of 2018, it has provided services to more than 2,000 wholesalers and paid NT$11.33 billion in financing services. It has successfully integrated FinTech into the ecosphere of the wholesale market and promoted inclusive finance. In 2018, Bank SinoPac won recognition in the "Best Digital Finance Award" in the Taiwan Banking and Finance Best Practice Awards, also known as the "Oscars" of the finance industry.

Feng Yun Mortgage

Bank SinoPac launched the "Feng Yun Mortgage" digital platform in June 2017 to respond to homeowners demands for funding in various stages of their lives and make their homes a flexible asset. "Feng Yun Mortgage" opened up unprecedented possibilities in the finance industry in Taiwan. It integrates digital banking, smart technology, and financial products, then uses consumers individual criteria to provide customized and integrated innovative services to gain a lead in the industry while breaking multiple records at the same time. As of the end of 2018, the number of mortgage clients reached approximately 75,000 and the total amount of the loans was approximately NT$418.3 billion. The product platform registered approximately 100,000 visits and applications totaled 7,208. Approximately 84.05% were new customers.

Developing Future Financial Services: Cooperation with NCKU, NVIDIA to Create Financial AI Technology Center

Bank SinoPac began cooperation with NCKU and the leading AI company NVIDIA in 2017 to introduce financial big data and AI deep learning technologies with the talents and R&D resources available in the university, and the goal is building a "SinoPac Financial AI Technology Center" to promote digital transformation. Bank SinoPac established the GPU hardware Backbone to integrate NCKUs open API for applications. Bank SinoPac used big data analysis and deep learning technology to integrate knowhow in the finance industry and used machine learning technology to develop credit risk assessment models which were prioritized for the use in small and medium enterprises in corporate banking. They are used for credit risk rating and early warning to strengthen risk identification, quantify and manage business risks. Bank SinoPac invested NT$120 million in the three-year industry-academic cooperation with NCKU to use the research and innovation capacity in the University to cultivate talents and develop AI FinTech applications. The Bank upheld the "learn by doing and do by learning" to lead the development of AI FinTech in Taiwan and open up future banking services.

Four Major Innovative Services in FinTech Development

SinoPac Holdings and subsidiary companies launched new services and products including biometrics, mobile payment, open finance, and smart wealth management in FinTech Taipei 2018.

Customer Relations Services

SinoPac Holdings has always aimed to grow with customers. SinoPac Holdings dedicates full efforts to the development of digital banking to achieve a perfect integration of virtual and physical channels, make finance easier, and improve the level of care from our services. SinoPac Holdings values interactions with each customer regardless of whether they are conducted online, in physical branches/offices, or via the telephones. SinoPac Holdings aims to provide outstanding service attitude, professional service quality, and a friendly service environment. Fraud cases in Taiwan have become increasingly severe in recent years. The subsidiary company Bank SinoPac aims to provide protection of all funds withdrawn or wired by every customer over the counter and organizes "fraud prevention operational training", "effective prevention of fraud case studies" and "latest fraud methodology reported in news media" each year to strengthen our blockage performance and improve employees core competencies. When customers conduct transactions at Bank SinoPac, our employees will pay close attention to their expressions and ask customer questions when they detect irregularities to protect customers assets from fraud.

Dongmen Branch and Jingmei Branch received recognition as financial institutions that helped prevent fraud from Taipei City Government. Siyuan Branch, Haishan Branch, and Huilong Branch received recognition as financial institutions that helped prevent people from fraud from New Taipei City Government. These awards are testaments to employees expertise in protecting customers assets and preventing fraud. In terms of customer service, the subsidiary company Bank SinoPac has always been committed to service quality and customer opinions. Its performance also satisfied external mystery clients who have always been strict in their assessments. The Bank won third place in the Global Views Five-Star Service Award - Finance and Banking Industry organized by the Global Views Magazine in 2018. In the future, Bank SinoPac shall continue to work hard to improve customer services and collect customer opinions from a variety of channels while optimizing customer experience to pursue greater customer satisfaction and loyalty.

Customer Service Channels

Customer Satisfaction and Customer Feedback Mechanisms

● Bank SinoPac: The over-the-counter service satisfaction rate was 97% and the telephone customer service satisfaction rate was 96%. Among the customer feedbacks collected, compliments increased by 23% from the previous year.

● SinoPac Securities: SinoPac Securities received ratings of more than 95% for three consecutive years and its performance in terms of politeness, accuracy, and efficiency were rated above 80 points.

● SinoPac Securities Investment Trust: 92% in overall digital service satisfaction and 90% in satisfaction of official website fund information.

SinoPac Securities Investment Trust uses methods such as customer visits, customer service hotlines, and emails to actively learn about customer service requirements and suggestions. It also completed the questionnaire survey for the official website usage satisfaction rate to understand customers satisfaction rate, suggestions, etc. for the current official website interface. A total of 376 effective responses were collected in this survey which showed 92% in overall digital service satisfaction and 90% in satisfaction of official website fund information. In addition, the positive experience in using the Companys digital transactions consisted mainly of the ease of the usage of the interface and prompt transaction notifications, which accounted for 44% and 18% respectively. The negative experience in SinoPac Securities Investment Trusts digital transactions mainly consisted of the lack of discounts of service fees which accounted for 30%. Results from related surveys helped the Company improve the service quality of the official website.

Friendly Service Space

Bank SinoPac abides by inclusive measures for financial institutions and constructed slopes or accessible parking space in cases where such construction is permitted in building regulations or usage licenses. Bank SinoPac also sets up accessible ATMs and ATMs with audio functions. Bank SinoPac MMA Financial Transaction Website launched the accessible website (accessibility.sinopac.com) in 2013 and obtained the "Web Accessibility Service Conformance Level" from the National Communications Commission. All of the Banks service items are integrated on the public information website homepage to facilitate more intuitive and convenient use in customer operations and create a friendlier financial service environment for customers. Bank SinoPac mobile banking also provides the "audio identification" service which allows customers to communicate their needs verbally and provides customers with friendlier and superior mobile finance services.

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