Tbilisi, September 26, 2018—IFC,
a member of the World Bank Group, today signed a cooperation agreement
with the National Bank of Georgia to enhance environmental, social, and
corporate governance standards in the private sector and help commercial
banks and companies improve performance, enhance competitiveness, and attract
IFC will provide advice on developing
corporate governance codes for public companies and commercial banks, with
special emphasis on the governance of environmental and social issues.
The IFC-supported Sustainable Banking Network (SBN) will also work with
the National Bank on designing a sustainable finance roadmap, developing
a regulatory framework, and providing technical guidance, as well as helping
financial institutions develop and issue green and climate finance products
such as green bonds.
To kick off the cooperation and share global and regional experiences,
IFC, SBN, and the National Bank hosted Tbilisi’s first sustainable finance
workshop today, which was attended by over 50 participants from Georgia’s
financial sector, the SBN, and central banks from the region.
“The National Bank of Georgia aims
to enhance the role of the financial system in managing environmental,
social, and governance risks and mobilizing capital for green investments
in Georgia. The support of IFC and the SBN will be important in helping
us develop a sustainable finance framework,” said Koba Gvenetadze, Governor
of the National Bank of Georgia.
The National Bank joined the SBN in late 2017 and
is an active member of its Green Bond Working Group. Members
from 35 countries, representing about $43 trillion in banking assets in
emerging markets, are united by the aim to make their national financial
systems sustainable. To date, 17 SBN countries have released finance policies
and principles that integrate environmental, social, and corporate governance
into investment projects and increase capital flows to green projects and
Jan van Bilsen, IFC Regional Manager for the South Caucasus, said: “Sustainability
is critical to business success. Today in Tbilisi, we mark the launch of
sustainable finance reforms that can make Georgia’s financial system and
companies greener and better governed. This offers many advantages to financial
institutions and companies, including reducing lending risks, targeting
green investment opportunities, and increasing their appeal for investors.”
IFC has significant experience in the area, having helped more than 50
countries around the world develop corporate governance codes. IFC’s environmental,
social, and corporate governance policies are widely adopted as market
standards and embedded in operational policies by corporations, investors,
financial intermediaries, stock exchanges, regulators, and countries.
Georgia became an IFC member and shareholder
in 1995. Since then, IFC has provided around $1.88 billion in long-term
financing, of which nearly $980 million was mobilized from partners, in
60 projects in financial services, agribusiness, manufacturing, and infrastructure.
In addition, IFC has supported more than $394 million in trade through
its trade finance program, and implemented a number of advisory projects
focused on developing the private sector.
IFC—a sister organization of the World Bank and member of the World Bank
Group—is the largest global development institution focused on the private
sector in emerging markets. We work with more than 2,000 businesses worldwide,
using our capital, expertise, and influence to create markets and opportunities
in the toughest areas of the world. In fiscal year 2018, we delivered more
than $23 billion in long-term financing for developing countries, leveraging
the power of the private sector to end extreme poverty and boost shared
prosperity. For more information, visit www.ifc.org
The Sustainable Banking Network (SBN) is a knowledge and capacity-building
platform of financial regulators, banking associations, and environmental
regulators from emerging markets committed to developing sustainable finance
frameworks based on national context and priorities, as well as international
good practices. IFC acts as the Secretariat of the Network, playing the
role of facilitator and technical adviser to SBN. For more information
on the Sustainable Banking Network, visit www.ifc.org/sbn.