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Perspective
07 June 2021

ICC’s export finance sustainability initiative white paper due

Deputy Editor
The ICC Global Export Finance Committee’s Sustainability Working Group (ICC-SWG) is making progress, with a white paper on how the industry aims to fulfil the UN’s sustainable development agenda - in a bid to develop both ECA policy and product - due to be published this month. Findings from the recent industry-wide survey commissioned by the ICC-SWG can also be found here.

The International Chamber of Commerce (ICC) Global Export Finance Committee’s Sustainability Working Group - comprising 16 of the most active ECA banks (including a handful of global heads) and the Rockefeller Foundation - is expected to publish a white paper over the coming weeks (June 2021).

In December 2020, the ICC-SWG commissioned International Financial Consulting and Acre Impact Capital to develop a white paper, which will review the state of sustainable finance across the export finance landscape and propose both product and policy recommendations aimed at boosting the flow of export credits towards greater sustainable activity.

An industry-wide survey was launched in January 2021, which aimed at collecting individual perspectives on the topic of sustainability has received close to 500 responses across buyers, exporters, ECAs, banks, NGOs and industry bodies.

  • A few highlights from the survey:
    • 90%+ of all respondents (across all categories) report that the sustainability agenda has become much more important recently
    • More than 85% of respondents (across all categories) think that the industry should become more sustainable and that ECAs have an important role to play in shifting the industry towards a higher share of sustainable exports.
    • 70%+ of buyers report that financing projects in sectors that have a negative environmental and social impact is becoming more challenging
      • 80%+ of banks report lower appetite for such projects
      • ~70% of ECAs report lower appetite for such projects
    • Banks and ECAs have started to implement incentives to support sustainable projects
      • 45%+ of bank respondents say they provide clients better pricing for sustainable projects
      • ~20% of ECA respondents say they provide clients better pricing for sustainable projects
  • In addition, the project team has conducted interviews with close to 100 individuals across the industry to provide further input into the research process.
  • The white paper will include both product and policy recommendations to increase the volume of sustainable export finance in the industry
  • The project team is currently finalising its analysis and seeks to launch the White Paper in the next month.

The key to this white paper is garnering collaborative feedback from ECA-backed dealmakers and relaying that back to key industry stakeholders. So if you are part of the export finance community and want your say in the role of ECAs in achieving carbon neutrality, please join the TXF Export Finance World Fair - a virtual conference from 8-10 June 2021. 

If you’re a TXF Export Finance member, then you can sign up to the event for free via your membership portal here.

 Otherwise for more information on how you can attend please contact natasha.warne@txfmedia.com

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