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HSBC beefing up lending for ‘net zero-aligned’ green projects

Global bank HSBC is beefing up its lending portfolio for sustainability-anchored projects, including green energy technologies, that could help accelerate the fulfillment of the ‘net zero’ carbon emission goals enshrined under the Paris Agreement.

In its “Path to Net Zero: Capturing Opportunities across ASEAN” webinar on April 22 that coincided with Earth Day 2021, the bank indicated that it “will increasingly prioritize financing and investment that contributes to the low carbon transition and will apply a climate lens to financing decisions.”

According to HSBC Philippines President and CEO Graham FitzGerald, “Covid-19 has been a catalyst for businesses everywhere to strengthen and act on their commitments to sustainability.”

HSBC Philippines president and CEO Graham Fitzgerald

He qualified that for HSBC, being an active bank in the Philippines for more than 145 years, “we continue to lay the foundation for a better future through helping our clients to capture key ESG (environment, social and governance) opportunities – be it in green finance, sustainable infrastructure or emission-free energy, as well as other emerging areas.”

HSBC has a massive lending portfolio of US$750 billion to US$1.0 trillion globally that it can funnel to investments as well as ventures that will usher in its customers to their well-targeted net zero goals– and that could range from green energy installations and all other projects that could pare carbon footprints.

“The bank is committing to align its financed emissions – the carbon emissions of its portfolio customers – to the Paris Agreement goal to achieve net zero by 2050 or sooner,” HSBC said.

Beyond helping customers to transition and achieving their carbon emissions reduction ambitions, HSBC stated that it is also aiming “to be net zero in its operations and supply chain by 2030.”

As could be gleaned from HSBC’s latest Navigator report, which polled more than 10,000 corporates across 39 markets all over the world, “86-percent of companies expect their revenue to grow over the next year from a greater focus on sustainability; and 92-percent of firms surveyed across Asia Pacific indicated that “they felt increasing pressure from their customers to become more environmentally sustainable.”

David Harrity, HSBC regional head of International Markets for Commercial Banking in Asia Pacific, noted that “businesses in Asia are playing a leading role in sharing a greener and more sustainable future.”

He highlighted that the bank’s network covers 90-percent of global gross domestic product (GDP), trade and capital flows, “which puts HSBC in a unique position to accelerate change and enable Southeast Asia’s access to much-needed sustainable finance solutions.”

Harrity added that on the financing sphere, “we are committed to supporting our clients to realize their sustainability agendas, with the right products and services, and as their trusted financial partner.”

It was in October last year when HSBC officially declared its ambitious plan “to prioritize financing and investment that supports the transition to a net zero global economy,” hinging that on a “landmark opportunity to build a thriving, resilient future for society and businesses.”

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Credit belongs to : www.mb.com.ph

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