The 52nd Annual Report of Commercial Bank of Ceylon PLC covers the 12-month period from January 1 to December 31, 2020. Having commenced reporting in line with the International <IR> Framework in 2013, this integrated report is consistent with our usual annual reporting cycle for financial and sustainability reporting and follows our most recent Report for the year ended December 31, 2019, for which comparatives are given, where applicable, within this Report.
To cater to the communications needs of the Bank’s diverse stakeholder groups, this Report is available in multiple mediums and formats. This approach also aims to balance the disparate imperatives of conciseness, comprehensiveness, and accessibility in our disclosure practices.
In addition to a focus on performance over the year, this Annual Report also provides stakeholders with insights into the Bank’s current and future strategies to drive growth.
Recent trends make it clear that in addition to traditional forms of financial reporting, stakeholders in general, and providers of financial capital in particular, want access to non-financial information when assessing future potential of corporates. Accordingly, this Annual Report seeks to provide a holistic, integrated discussion of the Bank’s performance, operations, and strategic imperatives.
This Report has been prepared in line with the International <IR> framework; and the Bank’s social and environmental impacts are presented in accordance with the GRI Standards: Core option. It also comments on the Bank’s contribution towards the UNDP Sustainable Development Goals.
The concepts, principles, and guidelines used in the preparation of this Report are drawn from the following sources:
The financial performance of the Group includes the Bank along with seven subsidiaries – Commercial Development Company PLC, CBC Tech Solutions Limited, CBC Finance Limited (formally Serendib Finance Ltd.), Commercial Insurance Brokers (Pvt) Ltd., Commex Sri Lanka S.R.L. Italy, Commercial Bank of Maldives Private Limited and CBC Myanmar Microfinance Company Limited – and an associate – Equity Investments Lanka Ltd. (depicted in the Consolidated Financial Statements on pages 143 and 290).
The Bank’s social and environmental impact, as discussed within the Management Discussion and Analysis, focuses on both Sri Lankan and Bangladesh operations of Commercial Bank of Ceylon PLC., the Parent entity of the Group, which accounts for more than 98% of revenue, assets, and borrowings unless stated otherwise.
During the year under review, no significant changes in the organisation type, structure, ownership, supply chain or topic boundaries took place. No significant changes in reporting or restatements were made of previously reported financial, social or environmental information, other than the inclusion of GRI disclosures GRI 207: Tax (2019) and GRI 403: Occupational health and safety (2018).
The Bank’s Managing Director/Chief Executive Officer, Chief Operating Officer and other members of the Corporate Management are responsible for the sustainability practices and disclosures made in this Report. They have actively engaged with the external assurance providers on the Report content.
The Bank’s External Auditors, Messrs Ernst & Young, have assured the Group’s Financial Statements and non-financial information, while Messrs DNV GL Business Assurance Lanka (Pvt) Ltd., who represent DNV GL, have assured the Bank’s social and environmental processes.
The Board of Directors and the Management have no other relationship with Messrs Ernst & Young, DNV GL Business Assurance Lanka (Pvt) Ltd. or DNV GL aside from their engagement as independent Assurance Service providers of the Group.
Six qualitative criteria were taken into account in the production of both text and visual elements (figures, graphs, tables):
Being keenly aware of the direct and indirect social and environmental impact of our actions, and the indirect consequences resulting from the business activities of our customers to whom we lend in particular, the Bank avoids or reduces any such negative impacts through credit policies, SMES screening, post-disbursement supervision, dedicated green products and risk management processes.
Although the Bank’s business model and operations do not directly create a significant negative impact on the environment, every effort is made to reduce its own carbon footprint through initiatives such as offering digital products/channels, solar energy usage, energy efficient air conditioning and the minimisation of paper usage in its processes.
Your comments or questions on this Report are welcome and we invite you to direct them to:
Chief Financial Officer
Commercial Bank of Ceylon PLC
21, Sir Razik Fareed Mawatha