Covid-19, CSR, Impact Investing & Reporting, Social Sector Policy
Asia, Cambodia, Hong Kong, India, Japan, Singapore

CAPS Spotlight: Who’s Doing Good

24 November – 8 December 2021
Dear Friends,

Asia’s wealth keeps growing. In fact, there are more wealthy Asians than wealthy Europeans, and they have great potential to do good. A recent SCMP article based on a Wealth-X report highlights how young our region’s wealthy are: their average age is 31 compared to 42 in Europe. For those passing on their wealth, mostly aged 70 to 80, philanthropy is one of their main interests. We know from our own research that education and healthcare are among the top targets of philanthropy in Asia, but we’re also seeing trends such as increasing interest in environment and sustainability-focused projects.


Ruth A. Shapiro
Co-Founder and Chief Executive

Philanthropy in Singapore is flowing to underprivileged groups that have been greatly affected by the pandemic. The families of Khoo Teck Puat and Ng Teng Fong are working with the Singapore Business Federation (SBF) Foundation, using a S$20 million (approximately US$14.6 million) donation from the businessmen’s estates to assist the migrant worker community. Philanthropic foundation Ngee Ann Kongsi is also providing financial assistance to more than 1,000 low-income students at the Institute of Technical Education.

Giving behavior in the city-state has also shifted during the pandemic. A 2021 report by the National Volunteer and Philanthropy Centre finds an 11% increase in volunteerism and informal donations in the past 12 months, away from established organizations. The use of online giving channels has also increased, following a worldwide trend accelerated by the pandemic.

Yuexiu Group’s latest donation to The Hong Kong University of Science and Technology. The HK$100 million (approximately US$13 million) is the most recent of several annual donations and the start of a new partnership for research, innovation and capacity building. Continue reading on the HKUST website →

Japan’s banks to boost impact investing. The new Japan Impact-driven Financing Initiative boasts some of the country’s biggest names in finance, including MUFG Bank, Sumitomo Mitsui Trust and Shinsei Bank. Signatories will work together to bolster Japan’s impact investing market, sharing action plans and best practices, as well as improving in-house strategy. The Global Steering Group for Impact Investment estimates Japan’s market has grown from US$300 million in 2016 to US$4.5 billion in 2020. Continue reading in Pioneers Post →

Finance companies call for ESG transparency. HSBC, HKEX and Bank Islam Malaysia Berhad are among the Asian financial institutions joining a global effort to corporate ESG disclosures. This continues the momentum garnered at COP26 and calls for increased green finance. Continue reading in Eco-Business →

Cambodia’s Prince Group Chairman sends pandemic support to Laos. Neak Oknha Chen Zhi, Chairman of Prince Holding Group, donates US$2 million to assist the government of Laos in its efforts to combat the Covid-19 pandemic. This is in addition to the US$1 million he donated in September. Continue reading in Khmer Times →

Giving in India is becoming more inclusive and collaborative. Wealth management advisors are seeing more and more young, upwardly mobile, working professionals pledging to support nonprofit organizations addressing social causes or engaging in impact investing. GiveIndia’s Sumit Tayal points to Covid-19 as triggering “the rapid pooling of collective resources and a heightened sense of purpose and awareness of how philanthropy can bring about measurable social change.” And SSIR looks at the potential of blended finance to address social challenges in India, and key barriers to overcome if these strategies are to be effective.

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