Press Releases

IFC Forum Helps Financial Institutions, Regulators Build Partnerships to Support Sustainable Banking

In Washington, D.C.:
Vanessa Bauza

Phone: (202) 458-1603

Washington, D.C., December 5, 2012— IFC, a member of the World Bank Group, is helping banks and other financial stakeholders from nearly 30 countries promote sustainable banking by sharing knowledge on emerging trends in sustainability and good management of environmental and social risks.

IFC’s sixth annual Performance Standards Community of Learning, which began today in Washington, brings together 140 participants to share expertise on environmental and social issues such as resource efficiency, climate change, and biodiversity. Bank regulators from Brazil, China, and Indonesia will also discuss their experiences in scaling up sustainable banking through the adoption of policies and voluntary environmental and social initiatives.
As providers of finance for businesses of all shapes and sizes, financial institutions can be key drivers in supporting sustainable economic growth. Many emerging-market banks have taken significant steps toward integrating environmental and social considerations into their operations and strategies.

“A growing number of financial institutions worldwide are adopting policies and lending practices that reduce negative impacts and increase positive impacts on the environment and on societies,” said William Bulmer, Director of IFC’s Environment, Social, and Governance Department. “As stakeholders in the financial community, we have an opportunity to learn from each other. Together, we can help build more resilient businesses and economies, and support sustainable economic growth.”

The Community of Learning provides an opportunity to share knowledge on the implementation of IFC’s Performance Standards, which are designed to help companies and financial institutions manage their environmental and social risks and do business in a sustainable way. The Equator Principles, a voluntary environmental and social risk-management framework used by 78 financial institutions worldwide, are modeled after IFC’s Performance Standards. In addition, 15 European Development Finance Institutions and 32 export credit agencies from the Organisation for Economic Co-operation and Development refer to the Performance Standards in their operations.

About IFC
IFC, a member of the World Bank Group, is the largest global development institution focused exclusively on the private sector. We help developing countries achieve sustainable growth by financing investment, mobilizing capital in international financial markets, and providing advisory services to businesses and governments. In FY12, our investments reached an all-time high of more than $20 billion, leveraging the power of the private sector to create jobs, spark innovation, and tackle the world’s most pressing development challenges. For more information, visit

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