The EBF has been one of the first endorsers and keen promoters of the Principles for Responsible banking, giving their potential to substantially accelerate the banking industry contribution to Paris objectives and SDGs. Learn more
43 banks launch Net-Zero Banking Alliance as key part of consolidated Glasgow Cop Climate Action
The European Banking Federation (EBF) welcomes the global Net Zero Banking Alliance (NZBA) convened by the United Nations Environment Programme Finance Initiative (UNEP FI) together with 43 banks. The launch unites existing and new net-zero finance initiatives into one sector-wide strategic forum: The Glasgow Financial Alliance for Net Zero (GFANZ). The newly found alliance will work to mobilise trillions of dollars necessary to deliver goals outlined in the Paris Agreement. The founding banks have committed to ensuring engagement with clients on their green transition and decarbonisation, promoting real economy transition in addition to withdrawal from lending to unsustainable economic activities. Learn more
A joint project of the European Banking Federation (EBF) and the United Nations Environment Programme Finance Initiative (UNEP FI) to assess the extent to which the EU Taxonomy on Sustainable Activities could be applied to core banking products.
The EBF is critically assessing the key dynamics and financing activities of European banks in order to achieve the SDGs. Our main goal is to promote best practices to assist European banks in adopting a vision and strategy aligned with the SDGs and provide a reference point regarding the current status of SDG incorporation in the EU banking sector. Together with KPMG Spain we have published a report which outlines European bank practices in supporting and implementing the UN Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs).
The study provides an overview of best practices and main challenges for the banking industry in implementing the 17 global goals more than five years after their adoption. The European banking sector plays an important role in achieving the 2030 Agenda due to its capacity to provide and channel resources towards sustainable initiatives that contribute to the implementation of the SDGs. To achieve this goal, most banks are identifying ways in which their activities can contribute to delivering the global sustainable development agenda, with about half of survey respondents reporting the use of indicators and targets aligned with the SDGs. According to the study, banks give priority to SDGs on which their financing activities can make the biggest impact, as opposed to areas where their influence would come from their role as employers or purchasers of products or services. While all SDGs receive some attention, the SDGs that receive the greatest bank focus are those related to economic growth and decent work (SDG 8), climate action (SDG 13), clean energy (SDG 7), sustainable cities and communities (SDG 11) and responsible consumption and production (SDG 12).
Sustainable-focused products have high potential as a source of SDG financing. 63.3% of banks surveyed in the study have already launched products, services or commercial initiatives based on the SDGs. For bank customers, these mostly include bonds and investment funds aligned with the SDGs. At the retail level, banks are developing products and services that promote a transition to a low-carbon economy, ranging from green mortgages to loans for the purchase of eco-friendly vehicles. Some products also promote other topics such as entrepreneurship or gender equality. Establishing sustainable financing frameworks also enables the banks to identify activities that can channel funding into projects aligned with the SDGs. In terms of portfolio evaluation to measure alignment with the SDGs, progress has thus far been uneven, with most banks reporting that little headway has been made in integrating these aspects into the business. The same trend is observed in terms of defining objectives and metrics suitable for monitoring. According to the study, this is largely motivated by the lack of a methodology to facilitate these tasks, and by the need to engage in strategic business thinking that considers SDGs from the initial stage. Report HERE
Finance against human trafficking
EBF is collaborating with the Liechtenstein Initiative for Finance Against Slavery and Trafficking (FAST) to raise awareness and mobilize our members against modern slavery and human trafficking. FAST has worked with a number of EBF members, including the Liechtenstein Bankers Association – one of its project partners – the Dutch Banking Association and the Swiss Bankers Association to help financial institutions access practical tools to use in this effort.
Learn more: www.ebf.eu/priorities/financing-growth/sustainable-finance/finance-against-slavery-and-trafficking/