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AXA and CARE Strengthen Their Partnership to Empower Vulnerable Populations to Better Face Environmental Risks

Media Contacts:

Discretion Winter
(212) 314-2968
AXA US
discretion.winter@axa.us.com
Jennifer Recine
(212) 314-2009
AXA US
jennifer.recine@axa.us.com

Laury-Anne Bellessa
+33.1.53.19.89.92
CARE

February 11, 2014
  • This €2.3 million partnership will span over 3 years with the goal of attaining a better understanding of climate change and develop adaptation responses, prevent natural disasters and provide emergency responses
  • Since 2011, close to 750,000 people in 8 countries have benefited from this global partnership
  • More than €500,000 has been raised by the Group, AXA employees and social networks in the wake of Typhoon Haiyan in the Philippines

The AXA Group and the international humanitarian organization NGO CARE have announced the renewal of their partnership, with financial support from AXA totaling €2.3 million over the next three years.  Building on previous projects, AXA and CARE will strengthen their partnership1 and enhance the long-term impact of the projects they have implemented supporting vulnerable populations to better face environmental risks.

This partnership is three-fold, with:

  • Climate Change Adaptation projects based on the international research program “Where the Rain Falls” in:
    • India: to adapt the agricultural practices of vulnerable populations to face climate change induced impacts - particularly water stress;
    • Thailand: to create sustainable, resilient measures to face the impacts of climate change - particularly the growing unpredictability of natural resources.
  • Disaster Risk Reduction projects already led in Benin, Indonesia and Vietnam will be pursued and extended to:
    • Central America (El Salvador, Guatemala, Honduras, and Nicaragua), with projects aiming at reducing climate risks, particularly droughts, by implementing risk management systems to improve food security within communities;
    • South America (Bolivia, Ecuador, Peru), with projects advocating for better national and regional policies that increase the resilience of the populations impacted by climate change (increased droughts, freeze or rainfall variability) and strengthen their decision-making participation regarding food security and nutrition.
  • Efforts to capitalize on field projects and take action to raise awareness regarding the impact of environmental hazards on vulnerable populations.  This will be achieved through participating in international negotiations to be held in in 2015, in particular the UN Conference on Climate Change (COP 21) to be held in Paris.

Moreover, AXA will support CARE to provide emergency responses to populations faced by large natural disasters by raising funds and making its expertise available when and where relevant.  In the wake of Typhoon Haiyan, which tore through the Philippines on November 8 2013, AXA organized an international fund drive on behalf of the NGO CARE, which brought in more than €500,000 (of which €240,000 from AXA employees, €250,000 from the AXA Group and €20,000 from social networks).

“We are very pleased to pursue our work with CARE over the next years, as this partnership has created social value and had a true social impact,” said Henri de Castries, Chairman and CEO of AXA
“We are particularly pleased that this partnership has greatly benefited from the growing engagement of our employees worldwide through volunteering and fundraising activities. We are proud to be able to state that AXA’s business is to protect people over the long term. And being able to invest in and use risk research and education to help vulnerable populations better face risks related to climate change complement well what we do on the ground through insurance services and protection solutions, and with over €20 million granted to support research on environmental risk by the AXA Research fund”.

“Climate change is already threatening the lives of millions of people worldwide, in particular the most vulnerable. CARE International is committed to helping those affected in crises situations but also to better face and adapt to climate risks. We are convinced that this can only be achieved at such an unprecedented scale if we work in partnerships with governments, civil society and the private sector,” said Arielle de Rothschild, Chairman of CARE France, Vice Chairman of CARE International.
“Since 2011, the AXA Group & CARE International have been working together to better understand climate change2 and have already implemented tangible and impactful projects to prevent climate change risks and protect hundreds of thousands of people.  We are very enthusiastic that the AXA Group has decided to renew our ambitious partnership, and its commitment to improving alongside CARE the resilience of the most vulnerable populations to climate change impacts”.

Main accomplishments of the AXA-CARE partnership since 2011:

  • Close to 750,000 beneficiaries
  • 38,000 AXA volunteers for fundraising activities1 global research-action project on climate risks and 6 disaster risk reduction (DRR) projects
  • Publication of the International research report “Where the Rain Falls” on the impact of climate change on vulnerable populations in 8 countries spanning 3 continents
  • AXA/UN/CARE co-presentation of results in major international climate summits (Rio +20, COP 18)
  • AXA’s support has helped CARE obtain €3.5million of matching institutional funds (EU, national governments) for DRR

About AXA’s actions following the Typhoon Haiyan in the Philippines:

More than 3,000 employees of the Group have contributed to this fundraising via the global fundraising platform ammado. This call has been relayed notably through social networks such as AXA People Protectors’ Facebook page, Linkedin and Twitter.

AXA took several steps locally to facilitate the challenge of getting help to victims in need. Sponsored by AXA Tech, five volunteers went to the Philippines to support the CARE humanitarian aid mission by providing telecommunication services.

AXA Philippines also provided emergency aid to employees and agents, as well as to their families, for example, by offering flights to safe areas and financial assistance to cover the cost of procuring basic necessities (food, clothing and medication).

About AXA’s position regarding climate change

AXA aims to leverage its privileged position to provide climate change-related solutions. Indeed, insurers are well equipped to address climate-related risks:

  • They possess claims loss data, as well as models and tools to analyse and project this data.
  • They have a duty to unveil and disseminate knowledge about such new risks, including poorly known threats to society.
  • Through their significant investments, insurers are also well positioned to send the right signals to the investment community and specific invested companies.

This strategy addresses both the “mitigation” and the “adaptation” dimensions of climate change. AXA has developed a number of initiatives that seek to address climate-related risks through its insurance and investment products, services and practices, as well as through the reduction of its internal carbon footprint.

In addition, over the past years, the Group has been particularly active in the area of research and education regarding climate-related risks, particularly through the AXA Research Fund that has dedicated close to 30% of its budget (€23.8 million for 139 projects as of end of January 2014) to academic research in environmental risks.

AXA has also actively engaged organizations such as the UN ISDR (member of the Private Sector Advisory Group), the UN PSI (founding member), the UN PRI (signatory), the Carbon Disclosure Project (founding member), the Geneva Association (participation in climate change workshops), the OECD High Level Risk Forum (member), and the Chief Risk Officers Forum (participation in ESG issues workshops).

The Group’s position regarding climate change is disclosed on http://www.axa.com/en/responsibility/environment.

About the AXA Group

The AXA Group is a worldwide leader in insurance and asset management, with 160,000 employees serving 102 million clients in 57 countries. In 2012, IFRS revenues amounted to Euro 90.1 billion and IFRS underlying earnings to Euro 4.3 billion. AXA had Euro 1,116 billion in assets under management as of December 31, 2012.The AXA ordinary share is listed on compartment A of Euronext Paris under the ticker symbol CS (ISN FR 0000120628 – Bloomberg: CS FP – Reuters: AXAF.PA). AXA’s American Depository Share is also quoted on the OTC QX platform under the ticker symbol AXAHY.The AXA Group is included in the main international SRI indexes, such as Dow Jones Sustainability Index (DJSI) and FTSE4GOOD.It is a founding member of the UN Environment Programme’s Finance Initiative (UNEP FI) Principles for Sustainable Insurance and a signatory of the UN Principles for Responsible Investment.

This press release is available on the AXA Group website
www.axa.com

About CARE

Founded in 1945, CARE is one of the world’s leading humanitarian organizations. It is non-partisan and non-sectarian. In 2013, CARE worked in 86 countries and reached 97 million people around the world. In its emergency response and long-term development programs, CARE seeks to fight underlying causes of poverty.CARE places special focus on working alongside poor girls and women because, equipped with the proper resources, they have the power to lift whole families and entire communities out of poverty.

To know more about CARE: www.carefrance.org

Media Relations:
Laury-Anne Bellessa +33.1.53.19.89.92

1 See: http://www.axa.com/en/responsibility/community/risk-research-and-education/

2 See: Research-Action “Where The Rain Falls” – www.wheretherainfalls.org

IMPORTANT LEGAL INFORMATION AND CAUTIONARY STATEMENTS CONCERNING FORWARD-LOOKING STATEMENTS

Certain statements contained herein are forward-looking statements including, but not limited to, statements that are predictions of or indicate future events, trends, plans or objectives. Undue reliance should not be placed on such statements because, by their nature, they are subject to known and unknown risks and uncertainties. Please refer to the section “Cautionary statements” in page 2 of AXA’s Document de Référence for the year ended December 31, 2012, for a description of certain important factors, risks and uncertainties that may affect AXA’s business. AXA undertakes no obligation to publicly update or revise any of these forward-looking statements, whether to reflect new information, future events or circumstances or otherwise.