04 June 2020

Companies consider sustainability as an alternative to become more competitive and efficient

Firms in Brazil are extremely bullish about the prospects for business and international trade growth. Almost nine out of 10 companies expect to grow in the next year while 39%, nearly twice the global average, are high-growth firms, expecting to grow by 15% or more. This optimism carries into the long term with more than half of companies forecasting strong growth, again twice the rate of the world average. Almost three-quarters of businesses have become more positive in the last 12 months.

Nearly half of Brazil’s businesses expect this turbo-charged growth to be driven by entering new markets while more than two in five believe that investment in new technologies is vital.

According to Navigator report from HSBC, Brazilian companies plan to invest in technology, innovation and infrastructure to improve sustainable production. 41% of Brazilian businesses plan to do this in the next five years. A third of Brazilian companies consider important to improve competitiveness by meeting the standards demanded by customers and regulators.

The companies consulted in Brazil were part of a survey held by HSBC among 9,131 decision-makers in businesses across 35 markets across the world between August and September 2019. The study gauges sentiment and expectations of businesses in the near to mid-term future on topics including: business outlook, international trade, geopolitics, sustainability, technology and wellness. It is compiled from responses from small and mid-market to large corporations

The survey in Brazil showed that Brazil has the highest commitment of any country to delivering the UN's Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs). Nine in 10 companies think they have a role to play with almost half believing that their role will be significant. Affordable clean energy and clean water and sanitation rank as the two most important goals.

Meeting regulatory and buyer standards are the key motivations for businesses to become more sustainable. A third of Brazilian companies believe that these are primary drivers, compared to a quarter of companies globally.

Businesses also feel under pressure to adopt sustainable practices from several directions. Nearly half of companies are experiencing pressure from customers while more than a third feel compelled to do so by investors, government, regulators and competitors. The top priority for investment in the next five years is expenditure on technology, innovation and infrastructure to improve sustainable production.

According to the Navigator study, 90% of Brazilian companies think they have a role in delivering the UN’s SDGs, well beyond the global average of 63%. 45% of businesses feel pressure from customers to become more sustainable. One third of companies believe that the ESG metric on energy usage is relevant for them.

More information about Navigator: https://www.business.hsbc.com/navigator

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