Sustainability  >  Overview  >  Our Approach

Our Approach to Sustainability

Our approach to sustainability is guided by a sense of purpose: to create value for the long term, by managing our business in a balanced and responsible way. Our approach to sustainability is based on three pillars – responsible banking, responsible business practices and creating social impact.

Responsible Banking

We deliver products and services that promote sustainable development, and conduct our business in a fair and responsible manner.

These are our areas of focus:


Green and Social Finance

Offering solutions that help direct financing to create positive outcomes for both society and the environment.

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Responsible Financing

Shaping and incentivising sustainable practices of our customers through our lending and capital market activities.

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Financial Inclusion

Delivering solutions that help bring financial services to traditionally underserved segments.

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Fair Dealing

Committing to offering products and services suitable for our customers.

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Cyber Security and Data Protection

Managing cyber security and data protection and data governance.

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Preventing Financial Crime

Taking measures to avoid being a channel for perpetrating financial crime or laundering its proceeds.

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Responsible Business Practices

We do the right thing by our most important resource – our people – and take into account environmental and societal considerations in our day-to-day business operations.

These are our areas of focus:


Managing Our Environmental Footprint

Making a difference by acting responsibly through sustainable practices, behaviour and technology that respect our environment.

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UK Modern Slavery Act

Addressing the risks of modern slavery in our organisation, financing practices and supply chain.

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Sustainable Sourcing

Influencing our supply chain towards more sustainable practices, through the DBS Sustainable Sourcing framework.

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DBS Speak Up

Giving DBS employees the opportunity to speak up on misconduct and/or wrong-doing by a DBS employee, customer, vendor or third party.

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Employer of Choice

Committing to provide an inclusive work environment where every employee can develop professionally and personally.

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DBS Code of Conduct

Setting out the principles and standards of behaviour that are expected of DBS employees when dealing with customers, business associates, regulators and colleagues.

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Responsible Tax Management

Committing to pay our fair share of taxes across the countries in which we operate, and to comply with applicable tax laws and regulations.

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Creating Social Impact

We seek to be a Force for Good by supporting social enterprises – businesses with a double bottom line – and giving back to the communities in which we operate.

These are our areas of focus:


DBS Foundation

Building a more inclusive Asia by championing social entrepreneurship through the DBS Foundation.

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Live more, Waste less

Helping everyone do their part for a more sustainable future.

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People of Purpose

Our “People of Purpose” volunteerism movement drives impact in the areas of active ageing, education and the environment.

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Give for Good

Connecting clients to programmes and charity causes curated by selected national agencies in Singapore.

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DBS-SMU Sustainability Initiative

This initiative supports academics, businesses and students passionate about tackling real world sustainability challenges.

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Sustainable Development Goals

As a member of the United Nations Global Compact, we are committed to driving progress towards achieving the SDGs. We believe that we have a role to play in promoting sustainable development. We have chosen to focus on the following six SDGs which we believe we can make meaningful contributions to, and after taking into account the markets we operate in.

The UN SDGs, adopted in 2015 as part of the 2030 Agenda for Sustainable Development, are internationally accepted as targets that aim to end poverty, protect the planet and ensure that all people enjoy peace and prosperity.

Sustainability Governance

The Board has overall responsibility for sustainability and integrates environmental, social and governance (ESG) matters in the formulation of DBS’ strategy. The Board also determines what material sustainability matters are and provides guidance on their management and monitoring. ESG matters that are material to value creation are integrated into our balanced scorecard which is used to set objectives, drive behaviours, measure performance and determine remuneration of our people. The scoreboard is updated yearly and approved by the Board.

The Board delegates the execution of DBS’ strategy to the CEO, who heads the Group Executive Committee and is responsible for managing DBS’ day-to-day operations.

The DBS Sustainability Council, chaired by the Chief Sustainability Officer and comprising senior leaders across business and support units, reports to the CEO. It is responsible for developing DBS’ overarching sustainability framework, setting key performance indicators (KPIs) and targets in consultation with the relevant stakeholders, and driving sustainability initiatives across the bank. The Council also advises the CEO on material ESG matters which contributes to DBS’ overall materiality assessment. This in turn informs the Board’s strategic planning. The council meets monthly and provide periodic updates to the CEO, Group Management Committee and the Board.

Our senior management participated in training and workshops focused on sustainability. Additionally, relevant senior managers have been invited to attend training sessions focusing on topic specific sustainability matters.

Stakeholder Engagement

We are committed to continual engagement with our stakeholders, to understand the matters they are most concerned about.

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