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IFC-Supported Sustainable Banking Network Leads Expansion of Sustainable Finance in Emerging Markets

Bali, Indonesia, December 1, 2016 --- Accelerating the adoption of sound environmental and social practices by banks and increasing the flow of finance to sustainable development across emerging markets were the focus of today’s International Sustainable Finance Forum held in Indonesia. The meeting, co-hosted by IFC, Sustainable Banking Network and Otoritas Jasa Keuangan (OJK), the Indonesia Financial Services Authority, brought together over 300 participants representing financial sector regulators, industry associations and financial institutions from over 25 emerging markets.
The event is also the 4th annual meeting of Sustainable Banking Network (SBN) -- the IFC-supported global knowledge and learning platform for emerging markets financial sector regulatory agencies and banking associations, promoting a shift in how the financial sector contributes to environmental and social goals. Established in 2012, SBN membership has reached 31 countries across Asia, Africa, Latin America and Middle East – collectively covering an estimated US$42.5 trillion in banking assets and approximately 85% of emerging market banking assets.  
At the top of this year’s agenda was how to accelerate adoption of sustainable finance through better measurement of banks’ practices and impacts, and how to promote cross-border collaboration through common innovative approaches, such as green bonds.
"Sustainable development cannot occur without a strong and responsible financial system,” said Ethiopis Tafara, General Counsel and Vice President for Corporate Risk and Sustainability at IFC. “SBN has become a major force in accelerating the adoption of environmental, social and corporate governance practices that underpin stable and responsible financial systems. IFC is proud to support this work.”
A growing number of SBN members are also expanding involvement to all parts of the financial sector. A recent example is Indonesia, which has pioneered an integrated approach that enlists banks, capital markets and insurance providers to manage environmental and social risk and develop innovative financial solutions to address sustainability challenges.
According to Muliaman Hadad, Chairman of the Financial Services Authority of Indonesia (OJK), a founding member of SBN, ”We believe that environmental and social sustainability can only be achieved with the full support of the private sector, in particular the financial sector. By mobilizing local financial institutions to adopt systems and capacity to manage these risks and opportunities, we can leverage the power of the financiers to influence and work with local businesses to achieve Indonesia’s sustainable development goals, including addressing issues like poverty, pollution and ecosystem preservation.”
SBN members include regulators and banking associations from Argentina, Indonesia, Bangladesh, Brazil, Cambodia, Chile, China, Colombia, Ecuador, Egypt, Ghana, Honduras, India, Lao PDR, Jordan, Kenya, Mexico, Mongolia, Morocco, Nepal, Nigeria, Pakistan, Panama, Paraguay, Peru, the Philippines, South Africa, Sri Lanka, Thailand, Turkey and Vietnam.
Thirteen countries have launched sustainable finance polices and guidelines to date. IFC has also backed regulators in these efforts by providing its technical expertise and sharing experience with implementing IFC’s environmental and social Performance Standards, which have become a global benchmark for finance in emerging markets.
About IFC
IFC, a member of the World Bank Group, is the largest global development institution focused on the private sector in emerging markets. Working with 2,000 businesses worldwide, we use our six decades of experience to create opportunity where it’s needed most. In FY16, our long-term investments in developing countries rose to nearly $19 billion, leveraging our capital, expertise and influence to help the private sector end extreme poverty and boost shared prosperity. For more information, visit .
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