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Important information

The information and material contained in this website are designed to provide information on Martin Currie and is only directed at Institutional Investors and Consultants.

By accepting where indicated, you hereby acknowledge, agree and represent to Martin Currie that you are eligible by confirming that you are based in the UK, you are an authorised to conduct regulated activities in the UK and that you have read and understood the "Legal & Regulatory Information", which applies to any investment in our products referred to in this website.

The information contained within this website does not constitute an offer of or an invitation to apply for securities:

In any jurisdiction where such offer or invitation is unlawful or
In which the person making such offer is not qualified to do so or
To whom it is unlawful to make such offer or solicitation.

Martin Currie Investment Management Limited is authorised and regulated in the UK by the Financial Conduct Authority.

The distribution of this information in written format is restricted to the UK. The information contained in this site has been compiled with considerable care to ensure its accuracy at the date of publication. But no representation or warranty, express or implied, is made to its accuracy or completeness. Any research or analysis contained in this website has been procured by Martin Currie for its own use. It is provided to you only incidentally, and any opinions expressed are subject to change without notice.
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For advisors, professional wealth managers and wholesale investors

Important information

The information and material contained in this website are designed to provide information on Martin Currie and is only directed at Institutional Investors and Consultants.

By accepting where indicated, you hereby acknowledge, agree and represent to Martin Currie that you are eligible by confirming that you are based in the UK, you are an authorised to conduct regulated activities in the UK and that you have read and understood the "Legal & Regulatory Information", which applies to any investment in our products referred to in this website.

The information contained within this website does not constitute an offer of or an invitation to apply for securities:

In any jurisdiction where such offer or invitation is unlawful or
In which the person making such offer is not qualified to do so or
To whom it is unlawful to make such offer or solicitation.

Martin Currie Investment Management Limited is authorised and regulated in the UK by the Financial Conduct Authority.

The distribution of this information in written format is restricted to the UK. The information contained in this site has been compiled with considerable care to ensure its accuracy at the date of publication. But no representation or warranty, express or implied, is made to its accuracy or completeness. Any research or analysis contained in this website has been procured by Martin Currie for its own use. It is provided to you only incidentally, and any opinions expressed are subject to change without notice.
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Please read this important information. If you cannot make the representations below, please do not enter the website.

By clicking on this link, you agree and represent to Martin Currie that you are a resident of or incorporated in the United Kingdom have read and understood the "Important Information and Risk Factors", which apply to any investment in our products referred to in this website, and that you are categorised as a per se or elective Professional Client for the purposes of COBS 3 of the FCA Handbook or rules and guidance. The information on this section of the website is not intended for use by any other person, including members of the public.

Martin Currie Investment Management Limited, registered in Scotland (no SC066107) is authorised and regulated by the UK Financial Conduct Authority. Martin Currie Fund Management Limited, registered in Scotland (no SC104896) is authorised and regulated by the UK Financial Conduct Authority as a full-scope UK AIFM.

For the avoidance of doubt, nothing excludes, limits or restricts our obligations to you under the UK Financial Services and Market Act 2000 or any other applicable law or regulation.

The opinions and views in this website do not take into account your individual circumstances, objectives, or needs and are not intended to be recommendations of particular financial instruments or strategies to you. This website does not identify all the risks (direct or indirect) or other considerations which might be material to you when entering any financial transaction. You should consult with your professional advisers before undertaking any investment activity. The information provided on this website should not be treated as advice or a recommendation to buy or sell any particular security or other investment. The information on this website has not been reviewed by any competent regulatory authority.

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Please read this important information

Please read this important information. If you cannot make the representations below, please do not enter the website.

By clicking on this link, you agree and represent to Martin Currie that you are a resident of or incorporated in the United Kingdom have read and understood the "Important Information and Risk Factors", which apply to any investment in our products referred to in this website, and that you are categorised as a per se or elective Professional Client for the purposes of COBS 3 of the FCA Handbook or rules and guidance. The information on this section of the website is not intended for use by any other person, including members of the public.

Martin Currie Investment Management Limited, registered in Scotland (no SC066107) is authorised and regulated by the UK Financial Conduct Authority. Martin Currie Fund Management Limited, registered in Scotland (no SC104896) is authorised and regulated by the UK Financial Conduct Authority as a full-scope UK AIFM.

For the avoidance of doubt, nothing excludes, limits or restricts our obligations to you under the UK Financial Services and Market Act 2000 or any other applicable law or regulation.

The opinions and views in this website do not take into account your individual circumstances, objectives, or needs and are not intended to be recommendations of particular financial instruments or strategies to you. This website does not identify all the risks (direct or indirect) or other considerations which might be material to you when entering any financial transaction. You should consult with your professional advisers before undertaking any investment activity. The information provided on this website should not be treated as advice or a recommendation to buy or sell any particular security or other investment. The information on this website has not been reviewed by any competent regulatory authority.

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This website is intended for, and is relevant to, UK residents only and should not be relied upon by persons of any other jurisdiction.

By accepting where indicated, you hereby acknowledge, agree and represent to Martin Currie that you are eligible by confirming that you are based in the UK and that you have read and understood the "Legal Regulatory Information" which applies to any investment in our products referred to in this website.

Important Information:

We do not give investment advice so you need to decide if an investment is suitable for you. If you are unsure whether to invest, you should contact a financial adviser.

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By clicking on this link, you agree and represent to Martin Currie that you have read and understood the "Important information and risk factors", which apply to any investment in our products referred to in this website, and that you are incorporated in a country listed below and that you are either an institutional investor, a corporate professional investor or a consultant business. The information on this section of the website is not intended for use by any other person in any other jurisdiction, including members of the public. If you cannot make these representations, please do not enter the website.

All residents of Hong Kong: Neither Martin Currie Investment Management Limited nor Martin Currie Inc. carries on a business in a regulated activity in Hong Kong or is licensed by the Securities and Futures Commission. The content of this section of the website is intended for Professional Investors only.

All residents of Singapore: The information in this section of the website is intended for institutional investors (as defined in the Securities and Futures Act, Chapter 289 of Singapore, as amended) and consultants in Singapore only.

All residents of China: Neither Martin Currie Investment Management Limited nor Martin Currie Inc. is authorised by the China Securities Regulatory Commission to market its strategies in China. By clicking on this link, you warrant and represent that you are entering this website on your own initiative and without being influenced or induced by any third party to do so.

All residents of South Korea: The information in this section of the website is intended only for qualified professional investors and consultants based in South Korea.

Martin Currie Investment Management Limited, registered in Scotland (no SC066107). Martin Currie Inc, incorporated in New York and having a UK branch registered in Scotland (no SF000300), Saltire Court, 20 Castle Terrace, Edinburgh EH1 2ES Tel: (44) 131 229 5252 Fax: (44) 131 222 2532 www.martincurrie.com. Both companies are authorised and regulated by the UK Financial Conduct Authority. Martin Currie Inc, 620 Eighth Avenue, 49th Floor New York, NY 10018 is also registered with the Securities Exchange Commission as an investment adviser for the purposes of the Investment Advisers Act 1940.

For the avoidance of doubt, nothing excludes, limits or restricts our obligations to you under the UK Financial Services and Market Act 2000, the Investment Advisers Act 1940 or any other applicable law or regulation.

The opinions and views in this website do not take into account your individual circumstances, objectives, or needs and are not intended to be recommendations of particular financial instruments or strategies to you. This website does not identify all the risks (direct or indirect) or other considerations which might be material to you when entering any financial transaction. You should consult with your professional advisers before undertaking any investment activity. The information provided on this website should not be treated as advice or a recommendation to buy or sell any particular security or other investment. The information on this website has not been reviewed by any competent regulatory authority.

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For advisors, professional wealth managers and wholesale investors

Please read this important information

By clicking on this link, you agree and represent to Martin Currie that you have read and understood the "Important information and risk factors", which apply to any investment in our products referred to in this website, and that you are incorporated in a country listed below and that you are either an institutional investor, a corporate professional investor or a consultant business. The information on this section of the website is not intended for use by any other person in any other jurisdiction, including members of the public. If you cannot make these representations, please do not enter the website.

All residents of Hong Kong: Neither Martin Currie Investment Management Limited nor Martin Currie Inc. carries on a business in a regulated activity in Hong Kong or is licensed by the Securities and Futures Commission. The content of this section of the website is intended for Professional Investors only.

All residents of Singapore: The information in this section of the website is intended for institutional investors (as defined in the Securities and Futures Act, Chapter 289 of Singapore, as amended) and consultants in Singapore only.

All residents of China: Neither Martin Currie Investment Management Limited nor Martin Currie Inc. is authorised by the China Securities Regulatory Commission to market its strategies in China. By clicking on this link, you warrant and represent that you are entering this website on your own initiative and without being influenced or induced by any third party to do so.

All residents of South Korea: The information in this section of the website is intended only for qualified professional investors and consultants based in South Korea.

Martin Currie Investment Management Limited, registered in Scotland (no SC066107). Martin Currie Inc, incorporated in New York and having a UK branch registered in Scotland (no SF000300), Saltire Court, 20 Castle Terrace, Edinburgh EH1 2ES Tel: (44) 131 229 5252 Fax: (44) 131 222 2532 www.martincurrie.com. Both companies are authorised and regulated by the UK Financial Conduct Authority. Martin Currie Inc, 620 Eighth Avenue, 49th Floor New York, NY 10018 is also registered with the Securities Exchange Commission as an investment adviser for the purposes of the Investment Advisers Act 1940.

For the avoidance of doubt, nothing excludes, limits or restricts our obligations to you under the UK Financial Services and Market Act 2000, the Investment Advisers Act 1940 or any other applicable law or regulation.

The opinions and views in this website do not take into account your individual circumstances, objectives, or needs and are not intended to be recommendations of particular financial instruments or strategies to you. This website does not identify all the risks (direct or indirect) or other considerations which might be material to you when entering any financial transaction. You should consult with your professional advisers before undertaking any investment activity. The information provided on this website should not be treated as advice or a recommendation to buy or sell any particular security or other investment. The information on this website has not been reviewed by any competent regulatory authority.

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Please read this important information

By clicking on this link, you agree and represent to Martin Currie that you are an Australian wholesale client for the purposes of section 761G of the Corporations Act 2001 (Cth) and have read and understood the "Legal and Regulatory Information”", which apply to any investment in our products referred to in this website. The information on this section of the website is not intended for use by any other person, including members of the public. If you cannot make these representations, please do not enter the website.

Important Information:

Martin Currie Australia is a division of Legg Mason Asset Management Australia Limited (ABN 76 004 835 849). Legg Mason Asset Management Australia Limited is a wholly owned subsidiary of Franklin Resources, Inc., and holds an Australian Financial Services Licence (AFSL No. 240827) issued pursuant to the Corporations Act 2001.

Martin Currie Investment Management Limited, registered in Scotland (no SC066107) is authorised and regulated by the UK Financial Conduct Authority.

The FCA's regulatory regime differs from the Australian regulatory regime.
This material is provided on the basis that you are a wholesale client within the definition of ASIC Class Order 03/1099. Martin Currie is registered as a foreign company under the Corporations Act 2001 (ARBN 131 134 613). It is exempt from the requirement to hold an Australian Financial Services Licence under the Corporations Act 2001 in respect of financial services provided to Australian wholesale clients by virtue of the application of ASIC Class Order 03/1099.

The opinions and views in this website do not take into account your individual circumstances, objectives, or needs and are not intended to be recommendations of particular financial instruments or strategies to you. This website does not identify all the risks (direct or indirect) or other considerations which might be material to you when entering any financial transaction. You should consult with your professional advisers before undertaking any investment activity. The information provided on this website should not be treated as advice or a recommendation to buy or sell any particular security or other investment. The information on this website has not been reviewed by any competent regulatory authority.

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Intermediary investor

For advisors, professional wealth managers and wholesale investors

Please read this important information

By clicking on this link, you agree and represent to Martin Currie that you are an Australian wholesale client for the purposes of section 761G of the Corporations Act 2001 (Cth) and have read and understood the "Legal and Regulatory Information”", which apply to any investment in our products referred to in this website. The information on this section of the website is not intended for use by any other person, including members of the public. If you cannot make these representations, please do not enter the website.

Important Information:

Martin Currie Australia is a division of Legg Mason Asset Management Australia Limited (ABN 76 004 835 849). Legg Mason Asset Management Australia Limited is a wholly owned subsidiary of Franklin Resources, Inc., and holds an Australian Financial Services Licence (AFSL No. 240827) issued pursuant to the Corporations Act 2001.

Martin Currie Investment Management Limited, registered in Scotland (no SC066107) is authorised and regulated by the UK Financial Conduct Authority.

The FCA's regulatory regime differs from the Australian regulatory regime.
This material is provided on the basis that you are a wholesale client within the definition of ASIC Class Order 03/1099. Martin Currie is registered as a foreign company under the Corporations Act 2001 (ARBN 131 134 613). It is exempt from the requirement to hold an Australian Financial Services Licence under the Corporations Act 2001 in respect of financial services provided to Australian wholesale clients by virtue of the application of ASIC Class Order 03/1099.

The opinions and views in this website do not take into account your individual circumstances, objectives, or needs and are not intended to be recommendations of particular financial instruments or strategies to you. This website does not identify all the risks (direct or indirect) or other considerations which might be material to you when entering any financial transaction. You should consult with your professional advisers before undertaking any investment activity. The information provided on this website should not be treated as advice or a recommendation to buy or sell any particular security or other investment. The information on this website has not been reviewed by any competent regulatory authority.

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Please read this important information. The information on this section of the website is not intended for use by any other person in any other jurisdiction, including members of the public. If you cannot make the following representations, please do not enter the website.

All residents of Luxembourg, Republic of Ireland, Netherlands, Germany, Sweden, Finland, Norway, Denmark, Italy, Belgium and France: By clicking on this link, you agree and represent to Martin Currie that you have read and understood the "Important information and risk factors", which apply to any investment in our products referred to in this website, and that you are categorised as a per se or elective Professional Client for the purposes of Directive 2014/65/EU (“MiFID II”). The information on this section of the website is not intended for use by any other person, including members of the public.

All residents of Switzerland: By clicking on this link, you agree and represent to Martin Currie that you have read and understood the "Important information and risk factors", which apply to any investment in our products referred to in this website, and that that you are resident in or incorporated in Switzerland and that you are a Qualified Investor for the purposes of Article 10 of the Collective Investment Schemes Act. The information on this section of the website is not intended for use by any other person, including members of the public.

Martin Currie Investment Management Limited, registered in Scotland (no SC066107) is authorised and regulated by the UK Financial Conduct Authority. Martin Currie Investment Management Limited has a MiFID II passport to provide investment services to Professional Clients in the European Union.

For the avoidance of doubt, nothing excludes, limits or restricts our obligations to you under the UK Financial Services and Market Act 2000 or any other applicable law or regulation.

The opinions and views in this website do not take into account your individual circumstances, objectives, or needs and are not intended to be recommendations of particular financial instruments or strategies to you. This website does not identify all the risks (direct or indirect) or other considerations which might be material to you when entering any financial transaction. You should consult with your professional advisers before undertaking any investment activity. The information provided on this website should not be treated as advice or a recommendation to buy or sell any particular security or other investment. The information on this website has not been reviewed by any competent regulatory authority.

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For advisors, professional wealth managers and wholesale investors

Please read this important information

Please read this important information.

All residents of Luxembourg, Republic of Ireland, Netherlands, Germany, Sweden, Finland, Norway, Denmark, Italy, Belgium and France: By clicking on this link, you agree and represent to Martin Currie that you have read and understood the "Important information and risk factors", which apply to any investment in our products referred to in this website, and that you are categorised as a per se or elective Professional Client for the purposes of Directive 2014/65/EU (“MiFID II”). The information on this section of the website is not intended for use by any other person, including members of the public.

All residents of Switzerland: By clicking on this link, you agree and represent to Martin Currie that you have read and understood the "Important information and risk factors", which apply to any investment in our products referred to in this website, and that that you are resident in or incorporated in Switzerland and that you are a Qualified Investor for the purposes of Article 10 of the Collective Investment Schemes Act. The information on this section of the website is not intended for use by any other person, including members of the public.

Martin Currie Investment Management Limited, registered in Scotland (no SC066107) is authorised and regulated by the UK Financial Conduct Authority. Martin Currie Investment Management Limited has a MiFID II passport to provide investment services to Professional Clients in the European Union.

For the avoidance of doubt, nothing excludes, limits or restricts our obligations to you under the UK Financial Services and Market Act 2000 or any other applicable law or regulation.

The opinions and views in this website do not take into account your individual circumstances, objectives, or needs and are not intended to be recommendations of particular financial instruments or strategies to you. This website does not identify all the risks (direct or indirect) or other considerations which might be material to you when entering any financial transaction. You should consult with your professional advisers before undertaking any investment activity. The information provided on this website should not be treated as advice or a recommendation to buy or sell any particular security or other investment. The information on this website has not been reviewed by any competent regulatory authority.

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Investors resident in the Canada: By clicking on this link, you agree and represent to Martin Currie that you have read and understood the "Important information and risk factors", which apply to any investment in our products referred to in this website, and that you are resident in, or incorporated in, Canada and are a Permitted Client for the purposes of NI 31-103. The information on this section of the website is not intended for use by any other person, including members of the public.

Investors resident in the United States of America: By clicking on this link, you agree and represent to Martin Currie that you have read and understood the "Important information and risk factors", which apply to any investment in our products referred to in this website, and that you are either incorporated in, or a resident of, the United States of America and that you meet the definition of an Accredited Investor as defined in Rule 501 of the United States Securities Act of 1933, as amended (‘The 1933 Act’). The information on this section of the website is not intended for use by any other person in any other jurisdiction, including members of the public.

Martin Currie Inc, incorporated in New York with its registered office at 620 Eighth Avenue, 49th Floor New York, NY 10018 and having a UK branch registered in Scotland (no SF000300), Saltire Court, 20 Castle Terrace, Edinburgh EH1 2ES Tel: (44) 131 229 5252 Fax: (44) 131 222 2532 www.martincurrie.com, is registered with the Securities Exchange Commission as an investment adviser for the purposes of the Investment Advisers Act 1940 and is also authorised and regulated by the UK Financial Conduct Authority. Martin Currie Inc. operates under the International Adviser Exemption with the Ontario Securities Commission (‘OSC’) and is therefore currently not required to be registered as a portfolio manager for the purposes of MI 31-103.

For the avoidance of doubt, nothing excludes, limits or restricts our obligations to you under the UK Financial Services and Market Act 2000, the Investment Advisers Act 1940, National Instruments or any other applicable law or regulation.

The opinions and views in this website do not take into account your individual circumstances, objectives, or needs and are not intended to be recommendations of particular financial instruments or strategies to you. This website does not identify all the risks (direct or indirect) or other considerations which might be material to you when entering any financial transaction. You should consult with your professional advisers before undertaking any investment activity. The information provided on this website should not be treated as advice or a recommendation to buy or sell any particular security or other investment. The information on this website has not been reviewed by any competent regulatory authority.

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Please read this important information

Investors resident in the Canada: By clicking on this link, you agree and represent to Martin Currie that you have read and understood the "Important information and risk factors", which apply to any investment in our products referred to in this website, and that you are resident in, or incorporated in, Canada and are a Permitted Client for the purposes of NI 31-103. The information on this section of the website is not intended for use by any other person, including members of the public.

Investors resident in the United States of America: By clicking on this link, you agree and represent to Martin Currie that you have read and understood the "Important information and risk factors", which apply to any investment in our products referred to in this website, and that you are either incorporated in, or a resident of, the United States of America and that you meet the definition of an Accredited Investor as defined in Rule 501 of the United States Securities Act of 1933, as amended (‘The 1933 Act’). The information on this section of the website is not intended for use by any other person in any other jurisdiction, including members of the public.

Martin Currie Inc, incorporated in New York with its registered office at 620 Eighth Avenue, 49th Floor New York, NY 10018 and having a UK branch registered in Scotland (no SF000300), Saltire Court, 20 Castle Terrace, Edinburgh EH1 2ES Tel: (44) 131 229 5252 Fax: (44) 131 222 2532 www.martincurrie.com, is registered with the Securities Exchange Commission as an investment adviser for the purposes of the Investment Advisers Act 1940 and is also authorised and regulated by the UK Financial Conduct Authority. Martin Currie Inc. operates under the International Adviser Exemption with the Ontario Securities Commission (‘OSC’) and is therefore currently not required to be registered as a portfolio manager for the purposes of MI 31-103.

For the avoidance of doubt, nothing excludes, limits or restricts our obligations to you under the UK Financial Services and Market Act 2000, the Investment Advisers Act 1940, National Instruments or any other applicable law or regulation.

The opinions and views in this website do not take into account your individual circumstances, objectives, or needs and are not intended to be recommendations of particular financial instruments or strategies to you. This website does not identify all the risks (direct or indirect) or other considerations which might be material to you when entering any financial transaction. You should consult with your professional advisers before undertaking any investment activity. The information provided on this website should not be treated as advice or a recommendation to buy or sell any particular security or other investment. The information on this website has not been reviewed by any competent regulatory authority.

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Institutional investor

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Please read this important information

Please read this important information. If you cannot make the representations below, please do not enter the website.

By clicking on this link, you agree and represent to Martin Currie that you have read and understood the "Important information and risk factors", which apply to any investment in our products referred to in this website, and that: (i) you are an institutional investor, an intermediary investor a consultant or other professional investor; and (ii) you are entering this website on your own initiative and without being influenced or induced by any third party to do so. The information on this section of the website is not intended for use by any other person, including members of the public.

Martin Currie Investment Management Limited, registered in Scotland (no SC066107). Martin Currie Inc, incorporated in New York and having a UK branch registered in Scotland (no SF000300), Saltire Court, 20 Castle Terrace, Edinburgh EH1 2ES Tel: (44) 131 229 5252 Fax: (44) 131 222 2532 www.martincurrie.com. Both companies are authorised and regulated by the UK Financial Conduct Authority. Martin Currie Inc, 620 Eighth Avenue, 49th Floor New York, NY 10018 is also registered with the Securities Exchange Commission as an investment adviser for the purposes of the Investment Advisers Act 1940.

For the avoidance of doubt, nothing excludes, limits or restricts our obligations to you under the UK Financial Services and Market Act 2000, the Investment Advisers Act 1940 or any other applicable law or regulation. The information on this website has not been reviewed by any competent regulatory authority in any jurisdiction.

The opinions and views in this website do not take into account your individual circumstances, objectives, or needs and are not intended to be recommendations of particular financial instruments or strategies to you. This website does not identify all the risks (direct or indirect) or other considerations which might be material to you when entering any financial transaction. You should consult with your professional advisers before undertaking any investment activity. The information provided on this website should not be treated as advice or a recommendation to buy or sell any particular security or other investment. The information on this website has not been reviewed by any competent regulatory authority.

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Intermediary investor

For advisors, professional wealth managers and wholesale investors

Please read this important information

Please read this important information. If you cannot make the representations below, please do not enter the website.

By clicking on this link, you agree and represent to Martin Currie that you have read and understood the "Important information and risk factors", which apply to any investment in our products referred to in this website, and that: (i) you are an institutional investor, an intermediary investor a consultant or other professional investor; and (ii) you are entering this website on your own initiative and without being influenced or induced by any third party to do so. The information on this section of the website is not intended for use by any other person, including members of the public.

Martin Currie Investment Management Limited, registered in Scotland (no SC066107). Martin Currie Inc, incorporated in New York and having a UK branch registered in Scotland (no SF000300), Saltire Court, 20 Castle Terrace, Edinburgh EH1 2ES Tel: (44) 131 229 5252 Fax: (44) 131 222 2532 www.martincurrie.com. Both companies are authorised and regulated by the UK Financial Conduct Authority. Martin Currie Inc, 620 Eighth Avenue, 49th Floor New York, NY 10018 is also registered with the Securities Exchange Commission as an investment adviser for the purposes of the Investment Advisers Act 1940.

For the avoidance of doubt, nothing excludes, limits or restricts our obligations to you under the UK Financial Services and Market Act 2000, the Investment Advisers Act 1940 or any other applicable law or regulation. The information on this website has not been reviewed by any competent regulatory authority in any jurisdiction.

The opinions and views in this website do not take into account your individual circumstances, objectives, or needs and are not intended to be recommendations of particular financial instruments or strategies to you. This website does not identify all the risks (direct or indirect) or other considerations which might be material to you when entering any financial transaction. You should consult with your professional advisers before undertaking any investment activity. The information provided on this website should not be treated as advice or a recommendation to buy or sell any particular security or other investment. The information on this website has not been reviewed by any competent regulatory authority.

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If none of the above applies to you, please go to our corporate site.

Latest Stewardship Activity: June

A proposed Department of Labor (DOL) rule issued during June appears to build on an Executive Order (EO) from President Trump back in April 2019...

Market Developments

Regulation

US Department of Labor proposals on ESG investing

A proposed Department of Labor (DOL) rule issued during June appears to build on an Executive Order (EO) from President Trump back in April 2019, which directed the DOL to review positions that might result in ESG policies discouraging oil and gas investments. While the DOL does not specifically mention the EO in explaining why it issued the proposal, there appears to be an implicit underlying assumption that ESG requires a sacrifice in returns, or is additive to risk, in order to promote goals other than financial returns. The overall tone of the proposal is less supportive of ESG investments in retirement funds.

Our approach is to integrate ESG into our analysis and decision making with a focus on the materiality of the ESG factors which relate to the companies concerned. We believe this approach enhances our understanding of the companies we invest in and helps us understand factors that may influence their ability to generate long-term sustainable returns. Recently, it is also notable that Morningstar has highlighted the relative outperformance of ESG funds through the COVID-19 crisis.

The DOL oversees private-sector retirement schemes with its regulations applying to corporate pensions and 401(k) plans. Essentially, the rules as proposed will require employer-sponsored retirement plans which are considering ESG-focused investments, to show that they are expected to perform at least as well as similar non-ESG investment options. Perhaps the real impact of this rule will be on certain sustainability or impact funds where there is a more explicit goal, which in some cases may require an apparent sacrificing of financial returns. These are unlikely to be able to be offered in these plans.

European Union taxonomy

Signed into law during June was the European Union (EU) taxonomy on green investment. This is a detailed list of business activities that can credibly be called ‘green’ and covers six areas:

  1. Climate change mitigation
  2. Climate change adaptation
  3. Sustainable use and protection of water & marine resources
  4. The circular economy
  5. Pollution prevention and control 6. Biodiversity

To qualify, a business activity must substantially support one of the six areas without doing any significant harm to another, and without breaching minimum social safeguards (for example, those laid out in existing norms and UN guidelines). Originally intended to rein in ‘greenwashing’, through transparency about how products stacked up against an official definition of ‘green’, the final law is much broader. Now, all financial products being offered in the EU will be covered by the taxonomy although on a ‘comply or explain’ basis. Asset managers, investors and companies will have to report their alignment with the climate mitigation and adaptation components of the framework by December 2021. At that point, other pillars covering social and other aspects will be introduced, with the reporting deadline set for the end of 2022.

Our approach is to integrate ESG into our analysis and decision making...

Corporate announcements

Several large companies across a range of sectors and countries backed the UN’s ‘Race to Zero’ initiative on World Environment Day (5 June). Companies pledged to be netzero emitters by 2050, including beverages company Diageo, engineering giant Rolls-Royce and fast fashion companies Inditex and H&M. Now each of the six largest European oil & gas majors have announced plans that will bring them, they say, to net zero carbon emissions by 2050, as per the terms of the 2015 Paris Agreement, although the details and real commitments behind these headlines vary considerably. Italian multinational Eni stands out as the having the most ambitious plan, adopting targets for both carbon intensity and absolute Scope 1, 2 and 3 emissions, for all the products it sells.

UK-based BP announced a write-down of up to US$17.5 billion (£14 billion) from the value of its oil and gas assets – its largest write-down in a decade – because its oil price forecasts for the next three decades have fallen by almost a third. The cut to BP’s global oil price forecasts, to an average of US$55 a barrel between 2020 and 2050, could mean the oil company is forced to leave some oil and gas discoveries in the ground if the projects prove uneconomic to develop.

BP’s auditors, Deloitte, explicitly noted in the 2019 Annual Report that its previous impairment prices were not consistent with the Paris goals, based on a comparison to third-party scenarios. This was despite BP believing its strategy is ‘consistent with the goals of the Paris Agreement’.

Climate scenarios for the financial world

The Network of Central Banks and Supervisors for Greening the Financial System (NGFS) is a group of 66 central banks and supervisors and 13 observers committed to sharing best practices, contributing to the development of climate and environment-related risk management in the financial sector and mobilising mainstream finance to support the transition towards a sustainable economy. In June it published a report exploring eight climate change scenarios, which include three representative scenarios:

  • Orderly: Early, ambitious action to a net-zero CO2 emissions economy;
  • Disorderly: Action that is late, disruptive, sudden and/or unanticipated;
  • Hot house world: Limited action leads to a hot house world with significant global warming and, as a result, strongly increased exposure to physical risks

In particular, these scenarios set a framework for economic impacts and the likely policy ‘intensity’, represented by shadow emissions prices (carbon pricing is close to or exceeding US$100 per tonne in 2040 for all orderly scenarios and more than US$400 per tonne for the disorderly – effectively the late and hard policy reaction). This work may help frame future policy initiatives for the industries regulated by these entities, but also influence the future path of monetary policy. These scenarios follow on from the Bank of England (BoE) discussion paper from December last year ahead of its ‘2021 biennial exploratory scenario on the financial risks from climate change’.

Building back better

As governments look to the post COVID-19 recovery, the International Energy Agency (IEA) published a report suggesting that governments can spur economic growth and jobs at the same time as cutting greenhouse gas (GHG) emissions. Its pandemic recovery plan seeks to show governments how they can help their economies recover, at the same time as putting energy and other sectors on a track for lower carbon growth.

The plan would require investment of US$1 trillion per year globally in the 2021–2023 period, and provides policymakers with a roadmap to recovery. The plan outlines measures that governments can take across six key sectors: electricity, transport, industry, buildings, fuels and emerging low-carbon technologies.

The plan sets out policies and targeted investments for each key sector, including measures designed to accelerate the deployment of low-carbon electricity sources, such as new wind and solar, and increase the spread of cleaner transportation such as more efficient and electric vehicles as well as high-speed rail.

It also includes measures to improve the efficiency of industrial equipment; to make the production and use of fuels more sustainable; and boost innovation in technologies, such as hydrogen batteries, carbon-capture utilisation & storage and small modular nuclear reactors.

One success to note is the change we have seen at Lukoil, the Russian oil & gas group...

Martin Currie

Furthering our engagement

We have been extensively engaging with companies in emerging markets for a considerable period of time, leveraging the relationships we have built up with them as long-term investors. One consequence of this is that we find an increasing number of investee companies approaching us to seek input into how they approach sustainability and ESG.

To build on this momentum we have, over the course of the last quarter, started to proactively reach out to companies recently added to the strategy to outline the type of investor we are and what they can expect from us in this capacity. It has also been an opportunity to outline any particular areas that are likely to be a focus for engagement. The response from the companies we have contacted so far has been immediate and very positive and will set out some of the engagement that we expect to take place over the coming quarters.

Climate change research paper

We have just published a climate change research paper setting out the main drivers and consequences of climate change – a reminder of the need for action to address it and how we, as investors are approaching the issue for our clients. In particular, the paper examines how we approach analysis and integration of climate change into our process, our active ownership strategy on climate change and how we work with our clients and report to them on climate change. We also look at the issue of climate change disclosure – in particular, the growing momentum behind the Task Force on Climate-related Financial Disclosures (TCFD) framework and the need for decision-useful information. The paper also looks at our proprietary modelling work, examining the value at risk presented by carbon pricing.

Engagement

Although the proxy seasons in Europe and the US are well past their peaks, there has continued to be a trickle of meetings over the course of the month, and we have engaged with a number of companies in the run up to these meetings.

At the start of the month, we engaged with a US-listed emerging market company with whom we have been discussing the issue of diversity for some time. While the company has made some progress on the commitments it has previously made, we were concerned about the nomination process for future directors, which was highlighted in the recent appointment of a new director. The company has made a commitment for greater disclosure and clarity on the process, so we will continue to monitor the progress it makes.

In Australia, we have been engaging extensively with the sustainability teams at a number of companies held, continuing to build up knowledge and understanding of the key issues and strategies being taken. It is interesting that, in many cases, we are one of the few investors pro-actively posing sustainability questions and there is clear willingness to engage.

Following Rio Tinto’s destruction of a 46,000-year old Aboriginal heritage site at the Juukan Gorge iron-ore deposit in the Pilbara in Australia, we engaged with the company’s head of investor relations to understand the background to this. The firm explained that the area has been negotiated with the local Aboriginal people for more than 13 years (finalised in 2013), during which over 7,000 artefacts were removed, and meetings have taken place formally every six months. Rio Tinto has apologised for the distress caused, launched an inquiry into how this breakdown in communication occurred and will be conducting a full review of its processes. The company believes that its process has worked well in the past, with full support of local indigenous groups. The Aboriginal Heritage Act (ACT) is also under review and Rio Tinto will be including findings of its review into the discussion on how to improve the act. We are keen to hear how such situations will be avoided in the future.

One success to note is the change we have seen at Lukoil, the Russian oil & gas group. We have previously engaged with the company on disclosure and management of GHG emissions which, until now, has been clearly lacking. As a first step to address this Lukoil has endorsed a new set of stronger environmental commitments as part of its Health, Safety and Environmental Policy. The key commitments are around use of best-in-class technologies, earlier introduction of environmental risk assessments and adoption of GHG Protocol Standards for accounting and reporting.

Upcoming activity

In July we are launching our new flagship quarterly stewardship report which will outline our key thoughts and activities for the quarter and how our stewardship work is evolving.

We are also preparing a seminar which will look at our approach to Stewardship and ESG, our approach to sustainability and some insights from our work in emerging markets.

The other area of work will focus on the ongoing consultations on upcoming legislation, with an opportunity to input extensively into how these develop via our trade bodies and representation on their key committees.


Regulatory information and risk warnings

This information is issued and approved by Martin Currie Investment Management Limited (‘MCIM’). It does not constitute investment advice. Market and currency movements may cause the capital value of shares, and the income from them, to fall as well as rise and you may get back less than you invested.

The information contained in this document has been compiled with considerable care to ensure its accuracy. But no representation or warranty, express or implied, is made to its accuracy or completeness.

The document does not form the basis of, nor should it be relied upon in connection with, any subsequent contract or agreement. It does not constitute, and may not be used for the purpose of, an offer or invitation to subscribe for or otherwise acquire shares in any of the products mentioned.

Past performance is not a guide to future returns.

The views expressed are opinions of the portfolio managers as of the date of this document and are subject to change based on market and other conditions and may differ from other portfolio managers or of the firm as a whole. These opinions are not intended to be a forecast of future events, research, a guarantee of future results or investment advice.

The analysis of Environmental, Social and Governance (ESG) factors form an important part of the investment process and helps inform investment decisions. The strategy does not necessarily target particular sustainability outcomes.

The information provided should not be considered a recommendation to purchase a particular strategy / fund or sell any particular security. It should not be assumed that any of the security transactions discussed here were or will prove to be profitable.