Absa Group Limited AGM round-up

Just Share has published a round-up of Absa Group Limited’s AGM, which took place on Tuesday, 4 June 2024.

Key takeaways: wage gaps, women in leadership roles & climate targets

  • Absa’s CEO expressed satisfaction with the rate of transformation and the level of investment directed towards advancing women in leadership roles, despite the company’s 21% female representation at the executive committee level and 38.8% at senior management level.  
  • Absa reports its highest to lowest paid employee pay ratio as 144:1, but the figure for the highest paid employee used to calculate this ratio is lower than the figure it reports as the CEO’s total remuneration. Using the total remuneration figure for the CEO yields a ratio of 175:1. 
  • Absa has disclosed its vertical wage gaps in line with the requirements of the Companies Amendment Bill, but did not voluntarily disclose the gender wage gap as it did in 2023, on the basis that the Companies Amendment Bill does not require this. 
  • The chair of the remuneration committee acknowledged discomfort with the gender pay gaps at the bank. She emphasised that management is dedicated to addressing the issue and will report back to the committee on the bank’s progress, but did not commit to taking any specific actions.  
  • Absa has published interim targets for reducing its financed emissions from coal, oil and gas by 2030. However, unlike its target for coal, which is an absolute emissions reduction target, Absa has chosen to use a physical intensity target for reducing its emissions from oil and gas. It acknowledges that this means it can increase its lending to oil and gas while still meeting its “target”. 
  • Absa confirmed its view of gas as a transition fuel, but did not respond when challenged as to how its efforts to “support coal clients in their ambition to re-weight their portfolios towards gas” could be viewed as part of the transitional role for gas. If companies invest in transitioning their operations to gas, this creates a serious risk of gas lock-in.  

Download the full round-up

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