Íslandsbanki's Sustainable Financing Framework consists of a green category for environmental issues, a blue category for sustainable projects in maritime-related industries and a special category for projects that support social development. The framework is based on the so-called "Green, Social and Sustainability Bond Principles", which are international standards issued by the International Capital Market Association (ICMA).
Preliminary estimates indicate that up to 30% of the bank's current loan portfolio could fall under the framework. A further analysis of the loan portfolio with regard to sustainability is ahead. The bank will also seek to increase the ratio of new environmentally friendly and social loans in its portfolio. Examples of projects covered by the framework are smaller hydropower plants, geothermal power plants, wind and solar power plants, sewers and treatment plants, environmentally certified products (also related to fisheries), environmentally friendly and certified buildings, renovation of buildings with better energy efficiency, energy exchange, building of schools and kindergartens and loans that promote job creation for women and disadvantaged groups. The bank already offers long term green financing on better terms for electric vehicles, electric bicycles and charging stations, and these loans will fall under the framework.
"There is strong interest from customers and investors in environmental and social priorities and we are responding to the call by publishing this Sustainable Financing Framework, which is certified by Sustainalytics. The framework provides us with a solid foundation for expanding the range of services for our customers in the field of environmentally friendly and social loans, as well as opening up new funding opportunities for the bank. We are proud to be the first Icelandic bank to publish such a framework and thus be a role model and positive force in the Icelandic economy ", said Birna Einarsdóttir, CEO of Íslandsbanki.
On Íslandsbanki's sustainability journey
Íslandsbanki's policy on sustainability aims to make the bank's operations exemplary in the Icelandic economy. To this end, the bank adheres to internationally recognised standards on environmental, social and governance (ESG) criteria. Íslandsbanki aims to be a leader in the field of sustainable development and a positive force in society. The bank intends to initiate extensive co-operation on responsible business practices that contribute to the sustainable development of the Icelandic economy and support the Icelandic government's climate action plan and at the same time the UN's SDGs. The bank is a participant in many international and domestic platforms in the area of sustainability and is a proud party to a declaration of intent on investments for the benefit of sustainable development. Earlier in 2020, Íslandsbanki received the Icelandic Knowledge Award from the Association of Business and Economists, awarded to the company that, in the opinion of the jury, has excelled in the field of sustainable development.