An ambition to drive progressBanks play a key role in our societies. As financial intermediaries, they participate in the development of sustainable economies and provide people with the means to build a better future. However, they must also demonstrate greater transparency and clarity around the ways in which their products and services create value.
The Principles for Responsible Banking aim to formalize these new responsibilities.
Six fundamental principles
The provisional charter, established in November 2018, is structured around six principles. These principles affirm the willingness of signatory banks to assume a leadership role in environmental, social and economic changes.
What are the Principles?
Align our business strategy with society’s goals as expressed in the SDGs,Paris Climate Agreement and other frameworks.
“We will align our business strategy to be consistent with and contribute to individuals’ needs and society’s goals, as expressed in the Sustainable Development Goals, the Paris Climate Agreement and relevant national and regional frameworks. We will focus our efforts where we have the most significant impact.”
Continuously increase our positive impacts while reducing our negative impacts.
“We will continuously increase our positive impacts while reducing the negative impacts on, and managing the risks to, people and environment resulting from our activities, products and services.”
03. CLIENTS & CUSTOMERS
Work responsibly with our clients and customers to create shared prosperityfor current and future generations.
“We will work responsibly with our clients and our customers to encourage sustainable practices and enable economic activities that create shared prosperity for current and future generations.”
Consult, engage and partner with relevant stakeholders to achievesociety’s goals.
“We will proactively and responsibly consult, engage and partner with relevant stakeholders to achieve society’s goals.”
05. GOUVERNANCE & TARGET SETTING
Implement commitments through effective governance and setting targetsfor our most significant impacts.
“We will implement our commitment to these Principles through effective governance and a culture of responsible banking, demonstrating ambition and accountability by setting public targets relating to our most significant impacts.”
06. TRANSPARENCY & ACCOUNTABILITY
Commit to transparency and accountability for our positive and negativeimpacts, and our contribution to society’s goals.
“We will periodically review our individual and collective implementation of these Principles and be transparent about and accountable for our positive and negative impacts and our contribution to society’s goals.”
Ambitious objectives for the banking sectorThese Principles are ambitious. They aim to define a global framework for a sustainable global banking system. They specify the role and the responsibilities of the sector in the development of a sustainable future, and align the banking sector with the United Nations’ Sustainable Development Goals and the Paris Climate Agreement.
These Principles aim to establish the first global norms on banking responsibility, and to ensure value creation for clients, shareholders and society in general. When banks sign the Principles in September 2019, they will commit to publicly acknowledging their social, environmental and economic impacts. They will agree to public objectives aiming to reduce their most significant negative impacts and to reinforce their positive impacts.
define a global framework for a sustainable global banking system.
The global public consultation is now openOn November 26th, 2018, during the fourth edition of Climate Finance Day and the Global Roundtable, UNEP FI launched a global consultation that aims to establish Principles for Responsible Banking that can be applied throughout the banking sector. In September 2019, banks participating in the consultation will sign a final charter.
Banks and stakeholders across the world are invited to give their opinions and comments to help shape the future of the banking sector. The consultation is open for six months.
“ Finance in its very nature is forward looking, and we must make sure that it works not only for profit but also for the future of the people and the planet. The framework set out by the UNEP FI in its Principles for Responsible Banking will enable us to move collectively in that direction ”
CEO BNP Paribas
BNP Paribas among 28 committed banks across the world
Twenty-eight banks are already involved in launching the Principles. Together, these represent more than 170 trillion USD in assets. They are present on five continents and in more than 20 countries: Access Bank (Nigeria), Arab African International Bank—AAIB (Egypt), Banco Pichincha (Ecuador), Banorte (Mexico), Barclays (United States and United Kingdom), BBVA (Spain), BNP Paribas (France), Bradesco (Brazil), Commercial International Bank—CIB (Egypt), CIMB Bank (Malaysia), First Rand (South Africa), Garanti Bank (Turkey), Golomt Bank (Mongolia), Hana Financial Group (South Korea), Industrial and Commercial Bank of China—ICBC (China), ING (The Netherlands), Kenya Commercial Bank Group—KCB (Kenya), Land Bank (South Africa), National Australia Bank—NAB (Australia), Nordea (Sweden), Piraeus Bank (Greece), Santander (Spain), Shinhan Financial Group (South Korea), Société Générale (France), Standard Bank (South Africa), Triodos Bank (Netherlands), Westpac (Australia), YES Bank (India).
Photos: header ©Francois Roux // ©EcaterinaLeonte // ©kwasny221