Hundreds of senior business leaders have gathered this week at the fifth annual Out Leadership: Asia 2017 LBGT+ Senior Summit, hosted by for the first time in partnership by KPMG, HSBC, and Thomson Reuters.
KPMG, HSBC, and Thomson Reuters have also committed to co-sponsor the Out Leadership Summit in Asia for 3 years, working together to build an enduring alliance to drive change in the region.
Summit participants enjoyed increased opportunities to learn and participate in a regional dialogue about corporates’ investment in LGBT+ inclusion across the three business-focused Summit sessions, including a conversation between the three CEO Summit hosts, a discussion of the way LGBT+ inclusion impacts risk assessments in the financial services industry, and the launch in Hong Kong of the United Nations business standards for LGBT+ inclusion.
In advance of the Summit, UN High Commissioner for Human Rights Zeid Ra’ad Al Hussein expressed hope that the private sector in Hong Kong would be a “catalyst for change” on these issues. “The private sector can take a leadership role in ensuring that their LGBTI employees experience dignity and opportunity in the workplace and beyond. When companies take action to end discrimination at work and support LGBTI communities, the ripple effects of such action can have a huge, positive impact in society,” he said.
“This is the first year KPMG has been actively involved in the Summit here in Asia, and we are pleased to be co-sponsoring this important conversation,” said Andrew Weir, Regional Senior Partner and Global Head of Building Construction and Real Estate, KPMG. “LGBT+ equality has been a key issue for KPMG for many years, and is a core element of our global Inclusion and Diversity agenda. Diversity is what makes us strong, and we are proud to stand shoulder-to-shoulder with our LGBT+ colleagues, the LGBT+ community, and our clients, as we strive to create an inclusive and equal society.”
“This year marks the fourth year of HSBC’s sponsorship of the Out Leadership Summit in Hong Kong. During that time the Summit has grown in influence and stature and we are delighted to announce our ongoing commitment to the 2018/19 events. As an international bank, with roots in Asia back more than 150 years, HSBC has benefitted from the many diverse communities we serve and remains committed to playing its part in creating an environment where everyone has the opportunity to fulfil their true potential” said Kevin Martin, Head of Regional Banking and Wealth Management Asia-Pacific, HSBC. “Asia’s LGBT+ landscape continues to evolve and while progress has been made there remains clear opportunity for us all to do more. This year’s Summit again provided the platform for constructive discussion and debate and there’s no doubt all of us who attended benefited greatly”
“The Asia-Pacific region has seen encouraging progress in recent years when it comes to LGBT+ rights,” said Sanjeev Chatrath, Managing Director, Region Head – Asia, Financial & Risk, Thomson Reuters. “Encouraging steps have been taken in areas like marriage equality, access to equal rights and privileges, and improving attitudes in the workplace. We believe that working together with industry partners we can learn from each other and accelerate our journey to creating a more inclusive workplace where everyone can bring their true self and accomplish their fullest potential. It is therefore all the more important that the leadership teams of HSBC, KPMG and Thomson Reuters in Asia have joined together to send a strong signal about the power of business in the region to drive equality. ”
“We’re humbled that so many of the leaders of the LGBT+ business community in Asia have gathered for our Summit this week,” said Todd G. Sears, Founder & Principal, Out Leadership. “When we launched the Out Leadership Summit in Hong Kong five years ago, we were the first LGBT+ Summit in Asia. And the amount of progress we’ve seen and helped to drive in Hong Kong, from the more than 75 companies who supported the Equal Opportunities Commission’s call for anti-discrimination legislation, to the legal victories for QT and Angus Leung, to the success of Hong Kong’s Gay Games bid, has been truly breathtaking.”