The National Bank of Georgia (NBG), in cooperation with the International Finance Corporation (IFC), a member of the World Bank Group, and the IFC-supported Sustainable Banking Network (SBN), organized a knowledge-sharing session with the National Bank of Ukraine (NBU). This event served as a platform for discussing the role of central banks in developing a sustainable finance framework and exchanging experiences in this regard.
The NBG joined SBN in September of 2017 and has been successfully collaborating on a number of sustainable finance projects since then. The key milestone in the development of a sustainable finance framework for Georgia was the launch of the Sustainable Finance Roadmap in April 2019 that was developed in cooperation with IFC. The NBG has also benefited from IFC's input when integrating Environmental, Social, and Governance (ESG) considerations into the Corporate Governance Code for Commercial Banks. Currently, the NBG is collaborating with SBN/IFC to develop a Sustainable Finance Taxonomy for Georgia, which will provide clarity on the projects, assets and sectors that can be labelled green, climate-friendly, and sustainable thereby positioning Georgia for the growing global market in sustainable investments.
The event started with a dialogue between the Governors of the NBG and the NBU and Jason Pellmar, IFC Regional Manager for Belarus, Moldova, and Ukraine. The conversation touched on the importance of sustainable finance and the role central banks can play in this process - helping the financial sector manage risks and unlock new opportunities. The significance of cooperation and experience-sharing was also highlighted.
As the Governor, Koba Gvenetadze, mentioned, "In the process of developing a sustainable finance framework, the NBG has greatly benefited from IFC's expertise and the knowledge sharing with other SBN members. We would like to be helpful to other members of SBN and share our experience with those who are developing their own national sustainable finance framework."
"The National Bank of Ukraine is just beginning to join the global process of building sustainable financial markets. Green investments in the economy, as well as the development of new financial products that have a positive impact on the climate, will become priority for economies and countries. We are moving in a global direction. Cooperation with partners from the Sustainable Banking Network will help us develop a roadmap for the development of "green finance" in Ukraine," said the NBU Governor Kyrylo Shevchenko.
During the session, the NBG team presented the sustainable finance framework for Georgia and described all the actions taken in this direction. The event ended with an in-depth discussion on the steps and challenges of sustainable finance framework development and future cooperation possibilities.
IFC's Program on Promoting Investment through Integrated Environmental, Social, Governance Standards in Europe and Central Asia is implemented in partnership with the State Secretariat for Economic Affairs of Switzerland SECO. The program aims to help strengthen the development of the private sector in Europe and Central Asia, including Georgia and Ukraine. For more information about IFC's work in the areas, visit: www.ifc.org/sustainability.
The IFC-facilitated Sustainable Banking Network (SBN) is a unique, voluntary community of financial sector regulatory agencies and banking associations from emerging markets committed to advancing sustainable finance in line with international good practice. It is a platform for knowledge sharing and capacity building to help members to design and implement national sustainable finance policies and principles. SBN's 41 member-countries represent US$43 trillion (86 percent) of the total banking assets in emerging markets. For more information SBN, visit www.ifc.org/sbn