The Second Plenary Meeting of the Green Investment Principles for the Belt and Road (GIP) was held today in Beijing, with over 130 representatives from more than 40 global financial institutions and international organizations participating in person or virtually.
In the past year, the GIP expanded its membership to 37 signatories and 12 supporters from 14 countries and regions around the world.
The GIP working groups organized four capacity-building webinars developed an online tool to measure project carbon emissions and launched a climate and environmental information disclosure framework for GIP signatories, which is aligned with TCFD recommendations.
The inaugural Annual Progress Report was released at the meeting, evaluating implementation by signatories and setting a baseline for future reporting. The report gave particular emphasis to climate and environment-related governance and strategy, assessment and management of sustainability risks, the greening of investment portfolios, and consistent approach to disclosures, noting that further efforts are needed to address challenges such as varying levels of implementation capacity.
Building on the Report findings, a three-year plan for the GIP, “Vision 2023”, was put forward at the meeting. The focus areas for the GIP vision are set out under five key pillars – assess, disclose, commit, invest, and grow. Expectations under the Vision include for all members to have made their first TCFD disclosure by 2023. Winners of a set of GIP awards were also announced at the meeting.
Three signatories were nominated for each award category. Standard Chartered Bank received the Best GIP Implementation Award and Silk Road Fund received the Best GIP Green Finance Transaction Award. The Secretariat, together with signatories that co-chair the thematic working groups, reported the progress made in the past year and outlined working plans for the year ahead under Vision 2023.
The Secretariat stated that the GIP will continue to foster green investment in the Belt and Road region through awareness-raising and capacity building in environmental risk management, disclosure, and green financial product innovation among its members. The GIP will adopt a renewed focus on capital mobilization, driving new green investment flows through regional engagement platforms. This regional approach emphasizes the opportunity for emerging market financial institutions to engage more broadly and deeply with decarbonization and green investment opportunities in BRI regions.
Dr. Ma Jun, the co-Chair of the GIP Steering Committee and Chairman of Green Finance Committee of China Society for Finance and Banking, said: “The GIP has made important progress in the past year by expanding its membership, enhancing capacity for disclosure, risk management and product innovation, and raising awareness of the importance of sustainability factors in governance.
Facing the COVID challenge and the opportunity brought about by increasing numbers of carbon neutrality pledges by countries, GIP members will have a greater role to play in financing green investments in B&R regions and contributing more significantly to the sustainable development goals.” Sir Roger Gifford, the co-Chair of the GIP Steering Committee and Chairman of UK Green Finance Institute, said: “Through the Green Investment Principles, investors from China, the UK, and many other countries are taking critical steps to ensure every financial decision they make takes climate change into account. Ahead of COP26, we must increase our resolve towards continued progress: supporting more signatories to increase their green investments and make robust disclosures in line with TCFD.”