Products based on fair trade principles are the biggest driver of ethical spending, according to findings from the latest Mastercard Ethical Spending and Charitable Giving Survey.
Released ahead of the International Day of Charity on 5 September, the study revealed 58.5% of consumers across Asia-Pacific place an importance on products based on fair trade, followed by environmentally-friendly products (56.8%), and products that donate a portion of their sales to a good cause (44.4%).
The survey also found that 53.2% of consumers were making purchases in support of ethical causes. South-east Asian consumers, led by Indonesians (75. 5%), Thais (72.3%) and Malaysians (70.5%), are most likely to consider whether a product is fair trade, environmentally-friendly or donates a portion of proceeds to charity, when making purchases.
Shoppers in emerging markets, particularly China (75.2%), Thailand (67.6%), Malaysia (65.7%) and the Philippines (64.6%) are more likely to purchase products from a merchant they consider ‘ethical’. On the other hand, consumers in Japan (20.4%) are least likely to show a preference for a merchant who acts ‘ethically’, followed by Korea (28%) and Singapore (29.1%).
When choosing which merchants to make a purchase from, consumers in the region have the highest preference for merchants who are environmentally responsible (50.2%), followed by socially responsible (49.7%), and merchants who partner with or donate to charities (46.1%), the study revealed.
The survey polled 8,738 people in 14 markets across Asia-Pacific in November 2016.