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Korea's best bank for CSR 2022: Woori Bank

Woori Bank

In August 2022, Woori Bank’s parent company, Woori Financial Group, put the law of big numbers to great use. Its plan to offer financial assistance worth W23 trillion ($17 billion) to socially vulnerable groups over three years garnered banner headlines.

It also demonstrates why Woori is a shoo-in for this year’s best bank for corporate social responsibility honours for Asiamoney. The bank’s co-prosperity finance project is prodding peers to raise their CSR ambitions.

Of that total, about W17.2 trillion will be used to offer loans to young people for residential stabilization purposes as the fallout from Covid-19 and high inflation mean it is harder for them to make ends meet. That is particularly so for self-employed Koreans grappling with rising living costs.

About W3.5 trillion will support loan programmes for low-income earners. Woori, too, will offer lower interest rates to vulnerable borrowers at a time of near-record household debt in Asia’s fourth-biggest economy. The bank is spending W500 billion on a variety of CSR awareness campaigns, including efforts to build a thriving donation pipeline.

Such initiatives will augment ongoing efforts by the Woori Financial Future Foundation, a non-profit organization extending financial aid to the young and the vulnerable.