Sustainability is a priority focus area for governments across the globe and there is no question that ‘sustainable finance’ and ‘environmental, social and governance’ (ESG) linked performance are popular buzzwords in business today. Accordingly, sustainable finance is rapidly becoming a regulatory imperative – companies are not only increasingly talking about how to address issues of sustainability but are also starting to put it into practice.
Through the introduction of debt financing products, such as green home mortgages and ESG-linked revolving credit facilities, banks and other financial institutions have started a process of transformation, acting as catalysts of change offering their customers the opportunity to transform their businesses to a sustainable and environmentally friendly business model.
Sustainable finance and ESG themes developing in the banking industry
To reflect on the sustainable finance and ESG themes developing in the banking industry, a number of senior figures from across the financial services landscape gathered for a roundtable at the offices of CMS to debate some key questions, including: whether banks and other debt providers should be prioritising sustainable finance and ESG lending? Is there a market for sustainable/ESG debt and what are the risks? And, is it just a question of window-dressing or greenwashing?
In this report, we summarise the highlights of these discussions and explore whether the move to sustainability is one that will ultimately bring about transformation, as well as create new business for debt providers.
For more related insights you can also visit our Sustainable Finance & Responsible Investment Insights section.