Governor calls for green credit policy

Posted by BankInfo on Thu, Nov 07 2013 02:09 pm

Bangladesh Bank Governor Dr Atiur Rahman stressed the need to prepare sector specific credit policy guideline as “the nature of different sectors is different from the environmental perspective.”

He also said holding positive mindset and attitude on environmental credit guideline is the biggest challenge for the bankers.

Dr Atiur Rahman was speaking at “International Sustainable Banking Conference 2013” in Dhaka on Saturday.

Bangladesh Bank and International Finance Corporation jointly organised the day-long conference.

“Polluting industries like tannery differs from the investment in poultry,” said the governor explaining the nature of the lending sectors.

He added that quantifying environmental risk rating is another challenge.

On mindset, Governor said: “The mind-set amongst bankers should not be that environmental guidelines are damaging for growth of the business and a hindrance it’s in your own interest too for long run growth of your profits.”

“Capacity building on environmental issues is therefore required for the central bank and the commercials banks” to develop structured green banking practices and green reporting initiatives (GRI).

The green banking has been identified as one of the major drivers of sustainable economic growth in developing countries.

Governor said Bangladesh Bank’s Corporate Social Responsibilities (CSR) mainstreaming guidance of 2008 highlighted environmental sustainability issues alongside those of social and financial inclusion.

This was followed by indicative policy guidelines of 2011 specifically on instilling green banking practices, both in internal processes and in environmental impact assessment of financing proposals, he pointed out.

“Bangladesh Bank as a central bank took utmost care to kick the process off with setting examples in its own practices.”

Dr Atiur Rahman said: “In green financing lenders routinely take up environmental impact assessment of investment proposals, factoring in environmental risks in their financing decisions.”

He added the green financiers deny financing for environmentally risky undertakings lacking in adequate mitigation measures.

“This environmental screening of borrowing proposals, green financing promotes adoption of new energy efficient.”

Governor said Bangladesh Bank advises the banks to finance solar energy,bio-gas plant, ETP and Hybrid Hoffman Kiln (HHK) in brick field under refinance programmes.

“We introduce Tk2bn refinance line in FY2010 against bank loans for investments in solar energy, ETPs and biogas plants,’ he added.

Kyle Kelhofer, IFC’s Country Manager for Bangladesh, Bhutan and Nepal and Deputy Governor SK Sur Chowdhury, among others were present.

News:Dhaka Tribune/03-Nov-2013

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