IFC, Bosnia and Herzegovina Banking Association Join Forces to Bolster ESG in Bank Sector

Source: www.gulfoilandgas.com 9/21/2023, Location: Europe

A new cooperation agreement between IFC and the Banking Association of Bosnia and Herzegovina (UBBiH) aims to enhance the environmental, social, and corporate governance (ESG) capacities of the country's banking sector.

The agreement aims to provide the banking sector with an integrated ESG approach addressing critical topics—including effective environmental and social (E&S) risk management, climate governance, disclosure, and sustainability reporting—by sharing best practices based on IFC's internationally recognized methodology.

"This collaboration will greatly benefit our member banks, as ESG standards, which guide corporate policies to align with sustainable development concepts in the environmental field, are also highly relevant to banks," said Samir Mustafic, president of the Banking Association of Bosnia and Herzegovina. "Banking supervisors are currently introducing new regulations, and it is crucial to stay updated with the latest trends when it comes to transitioning to a greener future."

ESG risks can be a stumbling block for private sector investment in developing countries because of increasing scrutiny from international investors and new regulatory requirements, especially the EU. IFC`s work with UBBiH aims to address this challenge, helping the country's banks better manage risks and pursue more sustainable business opportunities.

"Strengthening ESG capacity and E&S risk management is critical for the banking industry," said Nicolas Marquier, IFC Manager for the Western Balkans. "By doing that, we streamline investments in projects and organizations with socially and environmentally sustainable development outcomes and increase green, climate-friendly finance products."

The agreement also aligns with IFC's larger goal of encouraging sustainable and responsible investment in developing economies, adding a vital regional component to its integrated ESG program in Europe and Central Asia, in partnership with the State Secretariat for Economic Affairs of Switzerland SECO.


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