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Battle to persuade return to offices puts spotlight on ESG

Real estate is going to be much more visible and more widely discussed in the coming years, particularly as discussion starts on reconfiguring city and town centres, says Angus Johnston, leader, UK real estate at PwC.

This will make it more important than ever for property companies to be seen to be engaging properly with issues such as all aspects of ESG.

Talking to Real Asset Insight’s Richard Betts he said that there is a raft of regulatory change coming through. “There are also increasing levels of fiscal carrots and sticks,” he added.”Among investors now there’s a very heightened sens that all of these warm words about this topic really need to be turned into hard action.”

Property companies are well aware of that and are starting to accelerate their engagement around environmental issues, but increasingly around the social and governance aspects.

The pressure is coming from a combination of sources: occupiers, investors and regulation. Tenants, in particular are important because they are the people that actually use offices.

“There’s going to be a battle of sorts to get people back into the office and I think part of that is going to be demonstrating to people that the offices they’re coming back to are helping, not hindering the environmental side of this.”

Click on the video above to watch the full interview or listen to the podcast below.

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