Sustainability Advisory Panel Chair message.

To assist us on our sustainability journey and to ensure we are sufficiently challenged by representatives of our communities we established a Sustainability Advisory Panel.

Panel


This is the third year that the Panel has operated as an independently chaired ‘critical friend’ of the bank. Our role is to provide insights into the changing expectations of communities, stakeholders and customers, identifying the changing risks and opportunities in the environment the bank operates in and challenging Westpac to take leadership roles where the organisation can be most effective.

This year our focus has been largely on two areas; climate change and social equity. Climate change because, while it is not particularly physically evident yet, it represents the biggest challenge to the economy and society. Social equity because it is also a fundamental threat to societal cohesion; with an increasing disparity in the ownership of wealth it is difficult to sustain a common vision of a future necessary for progress.

The bank has three areas of contribution to the battle against climate change:

  • Its own footprint and the footprint along its supply chain.
  • Through its lending and investment policies.
  • And as a leader in shaping business opinion.

Managing its lending and investment portfolio to avoid excessive exposure to debts and investments supported by assets whose value will be impacted by the effects of climate change makes good sense from a business perspective. Avoiding lending to future stranded assets also makes sense. Often the bank’s commitments will be long term, especially where there is no one else to take over the position, and these climate related exposures are expected to impact in a relatively short time. These changes in investment and lending criteria need to be signalled to customers early so they can modify their investment plans appropriately. Long term the movement away from climate exposed assets is a necessary change society must make. The Panel ensures Westpac recognises the constructive role it can play.

Similarly, in improving social equity the bank can have three roles:

  • Through its supply chain and purchasing power.
  • As a catalyst investor in social change.
  • As a leader in shaping business and government policy.

The reach and influence for good that a large institution such as Westpac can have should not be underestimated.

In both environmental and social impact Westpac demonstrates its understanding of its role and responsibility to the wider community. The report sets out how Westpac has addressed and plans to address these issues. You will see where Westpac is using its position, its power and its influence to help lead change. More importantly, in many areas, Westpac leads by example and action. Not everything is perfect but good progress is being made and Westpac remains up to the challenges the Panel puts to them.

This year Anne Norman and Phil O’Reilly retired from the Panel and I would like to thank both of them for their contribution over several years as well as thank the other Panel members for their continued interest and support. I also record my appreciation for the support provided to the Panel by Westpac’s sustainability team.



Nick Main

Chair

Our advisory panel.

The Westpac NZ Sustainability Advisory Panel is chaired by Nick Main and includes Emeline Afeaki-Mafile'o, Sir Rob Fenwick, Rangimarie Hunia, Sam Johnson, Phil O'Reilly and Dr Jan Wright. In addition to our Sustainability Advisory Panel, our strategy is overseen by our Sustainability Steering Committee, comprised of our CEO, Executive Team and Chief Economist.

Our governance structure helps us to ensure sustainability is overseen at the highest levels of our organisation and embedded throughout our everyday operations.

Emeline Afeaki-Mafile’o, MNZM

Emeline Afeaki-Mafile’o, MNZM founded Affirming Works in 2001, which uses a Pacific model of collective mentoring to provide life skills to young people in Auckland. It has mentored over 8000 children, youth and their families. This work led to the establishment of Fofola Consultancy Ltd, which has contributed to public policy development in New Zealand and the Pacific.

With her husband Alipate, Emeline owns Tupu'anga Coffee, which harvests, roasts and packages in the Kingdom of Tonga, supplies local establishments, and exports to New Zealand. The couple also started the social enterprise, Community Café, in Mangere and Otahuhu.

In 2006, Emeline was named as a Sir Peter Blake Emerging Leader and won the Westpac Woman of Influence award in 2014. She was also selected by the Tindall Foundation as a member of the New Zealand Social Entrepreneur Fellowship.

Sir Rob Fenwick

Businessman, environmentalist and professional director, Sir Rob is a respected advocate for sustainability in both public and private sectors. He has started several successful businesses including municipal composting operation Living Earth Ltd and Waiheke Island based Te Matuku Oysters Ltd.

In addition to his role at Westpac, Sir Rob sits on sustainability advisory panels for Air New Zealand, Waste Management NZ and Fonterra which he chairs. He also chairs Sustainable Seas National Science Challenge, The Kiwi Trust and Predator Free NZ. He is a director of Te Papa and Ngati Whatua Orakei’s corporation Whai Rawa Ltd. Sir Rob co founded the Sustainable Business Council and The Aotearoa Circle, he is an inductee of NZ Business Hall of Fame and has an honorary doctorate from Lincoln University.

He has made a significant contribution to conservation in New Zealand and Antarctica and was knighted for services to business and conservation in 2016.

Rangimarie Hunia

Rangimarie Hunia is a Director of Ngati Whatua Orakei Whai Rawa Limited. With broad experience in the commercial, environmental, education and social enterprise sectors, Rangimarie runs her own business, is a director on the Institute of Directors’ Commercial Board, and a trustee on the Committee for Auckland and the Manaiakalani Education Trust. She was fortunate to lead the education developments for Ngati Whatua o Orakei for a number of years before starting a family.

From 2008 to 2012, Rangimarie was a director of the Ngati Whatua o Orakei Corporate Ltd, the former commercial arm of the hapu. She completed her masters in commerce in 2011 titled ‘Economic Renaissance of a Maori Community: Ngati Whatua o Orakei as a Case Study’ which traces the economic development journey of the hapu. Rangimarie graduated from university in the late 1990's with a commerce degree.

Nick Main (Chair)

Nick Main (Chair) is a chartered accountant and was CEO and later Chairman of Deloitte in New Zealand. More recently, he was Global Managing Partner of Sustainability and Climate Change Services and has also served as Deloitte's Global Chief of Ethics Officer. Nick currently chairs the Middlemore Foundation, is Deputy Chair of NIWA and is a board member of the Sir Peter Blake Trust. Nick has also held a number of high profile positions, including chair of the New Zealand Business Council for Sustainable Development and deputy chair of the New Zealand Leadership Institute.

Sam Johnson

Social entrepreneur Sam Johnson is Founder and Executive Director of the Student Volunteer Army. Sam has helped the SVA mature from a student social media movement into an internationally recognised charity that will engage 60,000 young people from all corners of New Zealand in its volunteering programmes this year. Sam is a trustee of the Prince's Trust New Zealand, Emerging Leaders Co-Chair for the Australia New Zealand Leadership Forum and an Adjunct Fellow at the University of Canterbury.

Phil O’Reilly, ONZM

Phil is the Director of Iron Duke, a public policy advisory firm to help leaders to connect with, and understand, the process of developing public policy. Formerly the Chief Executive of BusinessNZ, New Zealand’s largest business advocacy group representing thousands of businesses of all sizes, Phil worked with companies, organisations and political and other decision makers, advocating for New Zealand’s success through sustainable economic growth.

Dr Jan Wright

Dr Jan Wright was New Zealand's third Parliamentary Commissioner for the Environment, sworn in for a five-year term in 2007, and reappointed for a further five years in 2012.

Dr Wright has a Physics degree from the University of Canterbury, a master's degree in Energy and Resources from University of California, Berkeley, and a PhD in Public Policy from the John F. Kennedy School of Government. Jan previously taught at Sir Edmund Hillary Collegiate in Ōtara, worked as an independent policy and economic consultant for many different government agencies and as a member of various Crown Entity Boards, including as the chair of Land Transport New Zealand.

In her politically independent role as Parliamentary Commissioner for the Environment, Dr Wright led investigations into a range of environmental issues. In her last report, Stepping stones to Paris and beyond, she made the case for a new climate law in New Zealand modelled on the UK’s 2008 Climate Change Act. Dr. Wright is currently sitting on the Interim Climate Change Committee, which has begun to work on how New Zealand transitions to a net zero emissions economy by 2050.