Manila, Philippines, 27 May 2024 – On 14 May, Quisumbing Torres took part at the 2nd Philippine ESG Investors Summit held in Solaire Resort Entertainment City as the Official Law Firm Partner organized by PCM Asia and the French Chamber of Commerce and Industry in the Philippines.

The event gathered senior-level executives, stakeholders, and decision makers to discuss current trends that are shaping the ESG landscape, challenges facing the industry, share best practices, and collaborate to create actionable insights to propel the ESG space forward.

Among the keynote presentations at the forefront of the event is the discussion of the Philippines’ Roadmap Towards Carbon Pricing Solutions led by Quisumbing Torres Corporate & Commercial/M&A Assistant Practice Group Head Alain Charles J. Veloso. Charles also leads the firm's Capital Markets practice and Financial Institutions Industry Group, and co-heads its Sustainability Client Solution Focus Group.

Despite the Philippines’ nominal contribution of less than 0.5 percent to the global carbon emissions, the country is highly vulnerability to the effects of climate change. The country is actively seeking more ways to achieve significant reductions in emissions to meet its climate goals. Many Asian countries have either implemented or are considering carbon pricing strategies as the policies’ primary goal is to impose a fee on emitting and/or offering an incentive for emitting less. The price signal created shifts consumption and investment patterns, making economic development compatible with climate protection – thus playing a major role in mobilizing and creating fiscal space for investment.

Charles highlighted in his presentation insights towards the promising potential of developing mandatory and voluntary carbon markets to finance climate change mitigation goals and reduce projected cumulative greenhouse gas emissions as part of the country’s commitment under the Paris Agreement.

Charles was also among a panel of thought leaders who joined the roundtable discussion on ‘Investing in Climate Action’, alongside Erwin O. Avante (Chief Finance Officer of Energy Development Corporation), Ceejay Hernandez (Vice President for Corporate Sustainability of HSBC Philippines), Katrina F. Francisco (Partner for Climate Change and Sustainability Services of SGV & Co.), Maria Corazon G. Dizon (Member of the Institute of Corporate Directors) and Marla Garin-Alvarez (Vice President and Head of the Sustainability Office of BDO Unibank). The discussion was moderated by Ping Manongdo, Country Director of Eco-Business.

Moderated by QT Senior Associate Gaston Perez de Tagle with Ping Manongdo, the roundtable discussion on ‘Investing in Recycling Infrastructure’ was joined by Joey Uy III (Senior Vice President and Head of Corporate Affairs of Nestle Philippines, Inc.), Carlo Chen-Delantar (Partner and head of ESG and Circular Economy of Gobi Partners), Christer A. Guadiano (Director of Sustainability, ERM, Communications and Public Affairs of Cemex Holdings Philippines), Leah Magallanes (Vice President of Sustainability and F&B at SM Hotels and Conventions Corporation), and Jonas Marie A. Dumdum (Industry Solutions Senior Consultant of Nomura Research Institute).

Given that the Philippines is a major consumer of sachets (small, multi-layered plastic pouches for daily items), consuming at least four times more than high-income economies as reported by the Pew Charitable Trusts¹, and accounting for nearly 80%² of the nation’s plastic waste, it was timely and appropriate to discuss opportunities, potential benefits and risk associated with investing in recycling infrastructure during the summit.

Other key topics covered during the summit included the critical role of ESG investing in biodiversity preservation and energy transition, rapid growth of sustainable finance in emerging markets, net-zero pathway and the role of investors, among others.

To distill the key learnings and takeaways from the recently concluded summit, Charles urged attendees to reevaluate their business practices and align them with the inexorable trajectory of the world. “I think the best analogy is when the world evolved from the second industrial age to the third industrial age. Many companies and businesses were left behind because they failed to adapt. And now that we have just transitioned to fourth industrial revolution, characterized not just by digitalization but also decentralization and decarbonization. So, it’s either you sink, or you swim... because if you don’t adapt then you will definitely be left behind.”

QT’s Sustainability Client Solutions: Solutions | Quisumbing Torres

Sustainability is widely acknowledged as a driver of corporate success and long-term value by organizations that wish to stay resilient and competitive in the new economy. Sustainability is no longer restricted to eco-credentials, but now embraces all facets of business. Supply chain, taxation, human rights, inclusion and diversity, values, corporate governance, and other topics are all explored.

In this changing environment, clients seek guidance to set direction and navigate legal risk in the journey ahead, whether they are just starting out as a sustainable enterprise or are already market leaders.


¹ The Pew Charitable Trusts (2020). Breaking the Plastic Waves: A Comprehensive Assessment of Pathways Towards Stopping Ocean Plastic Pollution. Retrieved from breakingtheplasticwave_mainreport.pdf (

² World Bank (2023). Combating the Plastic Waste Crisis in the Philippines : Implementing Extended Producer Responsibility with Lessons Learned from Korea - Appendices (English). Retrieved from