As environmental, social, and governance (ESG) issues receive more mainstream attention, banks are continuing to find themselves in the crosshairs. From NGOs and investors to regulators and customers – banks are continuously being pressured to do a better job on ESG.
In a year that saw the unexpected upheaval and transformation of businesses and societies the world over, the credit and political risk insurance (CPRI) market was no different – having to adapt to the constraints imposed by the COVID-19 pandemic in order to continue serving its clients. James Esdaile, Managing Director of BPL Global, explains how the sector has fared and how it is set to develop given new trends and evolving client demands.
Mazars’ study on sustainable finance surveying 37 banks in North and South America, Asia and Europe indicates that progress is being made, especially in the UK and France, toward reaching ESG targets. Although improvement is still required in specific areas, banks and various agencies are joining forces to achieve sustainability goals.
Investment is no longer only about making a positive financial return. Investment options are growing, as many investors look to balanced portfolios that bring not only monetary benefits but environmental and social gains for the causes about which they care. As opportunities to invest in assets following ESG criteria multiply, the three main factors that make this investment opportunity rewarding for all include geography, the blue economy and private-sector participation.
The Illusion of Stability Gives Way to the Reality of Change in Capital Markets: Introducing Scotland’s New Stock Exchange
Impact investing, which places social and environmental goals as equal partners with risk and reward, is continuing to reshape the financial sector worldwide. One example is the new impact-focused Scottish Stock Exchange, which will require companies seeking to list to meet the demands of today’s socially conscious investor. Capital markets are in a state of flux within a changing world, and it is incumbent upon all financial-sector players to face this reality.
Since trade finance is lifeblood of global business, it has a positive role to play in driving sustainable practices. Here, banks can lead by example: through collaborative efforts, they can play a crucial role in encouraging a diverse network of counterparties to safeguard environmental, social and governance (ESG) principles, while also stimulating growth. So, how can “sustainable trade” be fully realized to meet these ends?
Macrotrends such as shifts in demographics, environmental awareness, urbanization are transforming one of today’s most fundamental asset classes, infrastructure. Required for the operation of any society, infrastructure is providing investors with impressive returns along with opportunities to capture the benefits of these megatrends; infrastructure investment has consequently shown impressive growth in the past decade.
Investing has become more complicated over the last few years, and investment managers are stepping up to the plate. It’s not all about the money any more but also about the climate, human rights and diversity. ESG investing is consuming an ever larger share of the investment marketplace as today’s investors grapple with environmental, social and corporate-governance considerations alongside their goals of maximizing monetary returns.