These Principles will help banks to align their business strategy with society’s goals as expressed in the Sustainable Development Goals and the Paris Climate Agreement. In addition to banks other institutions such as banking associations, investors, regulators/policymakers and civil society organizations are endorsing as well the Principles showing they are supportive of the initiative to establish the Principles for Responsible Banking, this is the case of the BBVA Microfinance Foundation Group.
“Endorsing the United Nations Principles for Responsible Banking is essential, more importantly when an organization’s purpose is to contribute to the sustainable development of socially and economically vulnerable communities, like BBVA Microfinance Foundation, which serves currently more than 2 million low-income entrepreneurs in Latin America through its six microfinance institutions”, BBVA Microfinance Foundation CEO Javier M. Flores stated. “With its mission, the Foundation is naturally aligned with the Sustainable Development Goals of the 2030 Agenda. For this reason it was elected as founding member of the Private Sector Advisory Group of the United Nations SDG Fund and it enjoys consultative status awarded by the United Nations Economic and Social Council (ECOSOC)”.
The Principles for Responsible Banking are open for consultation until May 2019 and will then be available for signature from September 2019, and include the following:
1.- Alignment: The organizations commit to aligning their business activities with the Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) and the Paris Climate Agreement.
2.- Impact: Positive impacts will be increased, negative ones reduced. The organizations will concentrate their efforts on those areas where their impact is most significant.
3.- Clients and Customers: Financial organizations will work responsibly with their clients and customers to encourage sustainable practices and enable economic activities that create prosperity for current and future generations.
4.- Stakeholders: The organizations commit to proactively consulting, engaging, and partnering with relevant stakeholders to achieve these goals.
5.- Governance and Target Setting: organizations are required to set public targets relating to their most significant impacts, defining corrective actions to address negative impacts and increase positive ones, contributing to the attainment of sustainable development and climate change goals.
6.- Transparency and Accountability: There will be periodic reviews of both the individual and collective implementation of these Principles; the participating organizations will be transparent about – and accountable for – the positive and negative impacts of their business activity.
The full text of the Principles for Responsible Banking is available at: www.unepfi.org/banking/