2021 Achievements and Actions by SBN Members (ongoing)

Since SBN’s inception in 2012, 26 member countries have launched frameworks and issued over a hundred national policies, voluntary industry principles, or guidelines for sustainable finance. In 2020 alone, over a quarter of SBN member countries issued new sustainable finance framework documents. Read more in the SBN 20202 Round-Up.

In 2021, SBN members continue to strengthen environmental and social risk management by financial institutions, tackle the challenges and opportunities brought about by climate change, and leverage sustainable finance to promote economic growth. Below is an ongoing list of their actions and achievements in the year so far: 

  1. On July 18, Central Bank of Egypt (CBE) launched the Sustainable Finance Guiding Principles with SBN and IFC/World Bank support. The Principles aligns with international standards and aims to accelerate sustaianble finance development. The publication of this regulation establishes Egypt's national sustainable finance framework.

  2. On July 7, the Ukraine National Securities and Stock Market Commission (NSSMC) adopted the Green Bond Regulation with IFC and SBN support, which aligns with international standards and aims to boost the green bond market in Ukraine. The publication of this regulation establishes Ukraine's national sustainable finance framework.

  3. The Agency of the Republic of Kazakhstan for Regulation and Development of Financial Market (ARDFM) joined the SBN. ARDFM carries out state regulation, control, and supervision of the financial market, and ensures the stability of the financial system. ARDFM is committed to moving the financial sector towards sustainability and supporting the goals established by SBN.

  4. On June 22nd, Bangladesh Bank, National Bank of Georgia, and National Bank of Ukraine - the central banks of these three SBN countries - held a peer-to-peer learning session, facilitated by SBN and IFC, to learn from Bangladesh’s experience in promoting green finance and how the central bank can oversee and drive the national sustainable finance agenda.

  5. On June 17th,  the Board of the Financial Regulatory Commission (FRC) in Mongolia, with supports from IFC and SBN, approved a new regulation on issuance and registration of the green bonds in line with the International Capital Markets Association's (IMCA) Green Bond Principles.

  6. On June 11th, the China Banking and Insurance Regulatory Commission (CBIRC) and the China Banking Association (CBA) jointly announced the establishment of the Chinese Banks Carbon Peak & Net Zero Initiative, an industry-wide working group on carbon neutrality and the first market-wide carbon neutrality initiative for banks supported by regulators.

  7. On June 7th, the South Africa Taxonomy Working Group, chaired by South Africa’s National Treasury, published a National Green Finance Taxonomy draft package for public consultation. The package includes the Draft Green Finance Taxonomy, User Guidance, and the Listing of developmental aspects.

  8. On June 4th, the National Bank of Georgia approved an update of its Corporate Governance Code for Commercial Banks and its Annual Pillar 3 Report disclosure requirements to include more environmental, social, and corporate governance (ESG) related requirements aligned with international good practices.

  9. On June 4th, China Banking and Insurance Regulatory Commission (CBIRC) and Indonesia’s Financial Services Authority (OJK) conducted a knowledge exchange session on Green Taxonomy Development, facilitated by SBN and IFC.

  10. On May 26th, the Central Bank of Iraq (CBI), with IFC's support, launched the first mandatory online baking ESG scorecard in the Middle East and North Africa region. CBI's new assessment tool will enable banks to conduct industry-specific scoring across the three ESG dimensions by providing a standardized approach to ESG reporting, and using assessment elements included in the Iraqi ESG Code and its relevant sustainability principles in line with global best practices.

  11. In May, IFC and the Ghana Securities Exchange Commission partnered to develop guidelines for green bonds in Ghana and facilitate investments in projects that address climate and environmental issues through green bonds.

  12. In April, the Central Bank of Ecuador (BCE, or Banco Central del Ecuador in Spanish) joined the SBN. BCE recognizes that sustainable finance is vital for Ecuador and is committed to develop and implement a national sustainable finance framework in the near term.

  13. The State Bank of Pakistan (SBP), with IFC support, is formulating the regulatory guidance to enhance knowledge and capacity of banks on environmental and social risk management, integrating climate change and other sustainability concerns into their risk management systems. On May 4, the State Bank of Pakistan (SBP) published a press release on its latest efforts to promote renewable energy financing. In the article, Governor Dr. Reza Baqir mentions SBP's SBN membership and the alignment of Pakistan's green and sustainable finance policies with global environmental and social standards and best practice.

  14. In April, the Financial Superintendence of Colombia (SFC) issued mandatory requirements for pension funds to include environmental, social, and corporate governance (ESG) and climate factors as relevant risks for investment portfolios and their integration into decision-making processes.

  15. On April 16thNational Bank of Ukraine and IFC signed a Cooperation Agreement. The aim is to help the NBU develop a roadmap of policy actions to introduce sustainable finance in Ukraine, with a focus on green financing and other sustainable solutions in line with the EU Green Deal and the EU Green Bond Standards. 

  16. On April 15thVietnam's State Securities Commission launched the Handbook "How-to Issue Guide for Green Bonds, Social Bonds, and Sustainability Bonds" aiming to provide corporate issuers and other market players in Vietnam with guidance in applying the global and Asean standards as well as national regulations of green, social and sustainability bonds which can help mobilize resources from domestic and international capital markets for socioenvironmental friendly and sustainable projects.

  17. On April 16thDr. Atiur Rahman, the former Governor of Bangladesh Bank, published an op-ed in The Financial Express, titled "Sustainable Finance for Green Recovery". The article outlines the efforts by Bangladesh Bank, a founding member of SBN, to promote sustainable finance in the country and help address challenges faced by the capital market.

  18. On April 2nd, the People's Bank of China, China's Development and Reform Commission, and China Securities Regulatory Commission jointly issued the 2021 Green Bond Catalogue after expert and public consultation. The updated Catalogue aims at expanding China's green bond market and helping achieve carbon neutrality.

  19. In March, the Banks Association of Turkey updated the Sustainability Guidelines for the Banking Sector to strengthen support to the Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs). The updates include financial inclusion and climate-related risk management and financing.

  20. On March 30th, central banks of the Association of Southeast Asian Nations (ASEAN) officially endorsed the initiative on the ASEAN Sustainable Banking Principles (SBP), proposed by the State Bank of Vietnam with SBN and IFC support. The SBP will serve as guiding principles to help ASEAN central banks further develop sustainable banking guidelines and tools aligned with each respective country’s context.

  21. On March 26th, Kenya National Treasury and Planning published the report The Landscape of Climate Finance in Kenya, which is the first attempt to track the country's climate finance flows since the Paris Agreement. 

  22. On March 24thSouth Africa’s National Treasury and Financial Sector Conduct Authority (FSCA) and Indonesia’s Financial Services Authority (OJK) conducted a knowledge exchange session on Green Taxonomy Development,  facilitated by SBN and IFC. 

  23. On March 24thKenya Bankers Association (KBA) published the "2020 Report on the State of Sustainable Finance in Kenya's Banking Industry", capturing the banking industry's gains in embracing Sustainable Finance practices and highlights areas of opportunity for policy intervention. KBA updated its Sustainable Finance Initiative e-Learning Platform: https://sfi.kba.co.ke/.

  24. On March 15th 2021, the ASEAN Capital Markets Forum has announced the rolling out of its new five-year action plan (2021-2025). The plan's strategic objectives include fostering growth and recovery with sustainability, promoting and sustaining inclusiveness, and strengthening and maintaining orderliness and resilience. 

  25. On  March 14th 2021, Egypt Financial Regulatory Authority (FRA) issued a decision to establish the Regional Centre for Sustainable Finance, promoting environmental conservation practices and the culture of green economy among banks and within the non-banking financial sectors, the first of its kind in the Middle East and Africa region.

  26. On March 5th 2021, in the lead up to International Women's Day, Moroccan Capital Market Authority (AMMC)  published the Gender Bonds Guidelines, which highlight the relevance of gender equality and women’s empowerment for sustainable finance, provide reference standards, and give guidance for issuing such instruments.

  27. On March 4th 2021, Bank Al-Maghrib, Morocco's central bank, issued the regulatory guidance on climate and environmental-related financial risks management, setting expectations for banks on managing the financial risks from climate change and the environment.

  28. On February 17th, 2021, the Brazilian Federation of Banks (FEBRABAN) and IFC announced their collaboration to promote sustainable finance and further align the banking sector with Brazil’s commitments to the Paris Agreement, including building capacity and embedding good practices in climate risk management in bank portfolios.

  29. On February 12th, 2021, the Moroccan Capital Market Authority (AMMC) and IFC signed a cooperation agreement to promote sustainable finance and improve corporate practices and reporting on environmental, social, and governance (ESG) considerations in the Moroccan capital market.

  30. On February 2nd 2021, the National Bank of Georgia (NBG) signed its second Cooperation Agreement with IFC, aims to support the NBG in its journey to develop a Sustainable Finance Framework that will cover sustainable finance products and governance of environmental and social matters in Georgia’s financial sector.

  31. In January, Maldives Monetary Authority (MMA) joined SBN. MMA is the central bank of the Maldives and the main regulator of the financial sector in the country. MMA recognizes that sustainable finance is vital for Maldives and is committed to building up market capacity in the near term.

  32. In January 2021, the Bank of Ghana (BOG) issued the Ghana Sustainable Banking Principles' reporting requirements. All banks in Ghana now need to report their environmental and social integration and performance to the BOG periodically.

  33. In January 2021, Chile announced the issuance of $4.25bn-equivalent in green-social bonds with record-high yields and record-long maturity periods, demonstrating issuer and market confidence in green and social financial instruments.

  34. In January 2021, the Peru Ministry of the Environment (Minam) launched the Green Finance Roadmap (HRFV) to promote environmental considerations in the financial sector's activities.

  35. On January 15th, the Indonesia Financial Services Authority (OJK) issued the Indonesia Sustainable Finance Roadmap Second Phase (2021-2025), developing a nationwide sustainable finance ecosystem driven by both supply and demand sides.

  36. On January 14 th, the National Securities Commission of Argentina (CNV) launched its Sustainable Finance Program and a public consultation on the creation of a new special regime to promote socially responsible investment, and green, social, as well as sustainability bonds.

  37. On January 11 thBangladesh Bank issued the SFD Circular No. 01: Target and Achievement of Sustainable Finance & Green Finance, setting a 15% target of all loans issued by the nation's banks and other financial institutions (FIs) to meet the broader definition of being “sustainable”. Read more.

  38. On January 4th, Mr. Koba Gvenetadze, the Governor of the National Bank of Georgia, published an op-ed in The Banker, titled “Georgia proves the benefits of preparedness” and mentioned SBN as a catalyst for the country’s sustainable finance development.

To share your country’s actions and achievements, please contact the SBN Secretariat at SBN_Secretariat@ifc.org.