On Wednesday 5 July 2017, the European Investment Bank, the world’s largest multilateral public bank and largest issuer of green bonds, celebrated the 10th anniversary of the world’s first “Climate Awareness Bond” at the Luxembourg Stock Exchange, where the first ”green bond” was launched in 2007.
EIB President Werner Hoyer highlighted the unique contribution of green bonds to accelerating private sector funding for climate related investment over the last decade: “Green bonds are crucial for tackling a changing climate and accelerating support for climate-related investment. The commitment to fight against climate change shown in the past decade by a broad range of market participants has mobilised private sector support for sustainable investment and has transformed the funding solutions offered by capital markets. The EIB, the EU Bank, remains committed to mobilising private investors and financing projects to deliver on the SDG objectives and the Paris COP 21 climate agreement.“
The momentum of increased dedicated support from institutional investors and unprecedented international cooperation to support projects that reduce emissions and protect against a changing climate was confirmed as demonstrating a clear focus to protect the planet. Looking ahead, further expansion of green bonds financing is expected to scale up private finance support for implementing the Paris climate agreement in the years ahead.
“The fight to mitigate climate change is a long-term transition project which requires a dedicated infrastructure for green financial instruments. As a green exchange we promote best market practices and provide transparency, accountability and comparability of green bonds. We were there for the 1st green bond, we were there for the 100th, we will be there for the thousandth. Congratulations to the EIB for leading the way!” added Robert Scharfe, CEO of the Luxembourg Stock Exchange.
Continuous supply of green bond benchmark issuance, efforts to continually strengthen investor engagement through harmonized reporting, disclosure and impact assessment, and a broadening range of issuers were identified as clear evidence that green bonds are both established as a mature dedicated investment instrument and key to future increase of private sector climate finance.
Luxembourg Minister of Finance Pierre Gramegna said: “Today we are looking back on an important milestone and a significant step forward in the global fight against climate change: The issuance of the first Green Bond by the EIB. Over the last years sustainable finance has gained real momentum and the Luxembourg financial centre has developed into an important hub for green finance initiatives.”
The self-financing EIB is the world’s largest supranational bond issuer and issues green bonds, which finance a significant proportion of renewable energy and energy efficiency lending, alongside regular bonds. The EU Bank is the world’s largest multilateral financier of climate related investment and last year alone provided €19 billion for climate action projects worldwide. In support of the Paris Agreement, EIB committed to deliver climate finance globally for around €100 billion in the five year period to 2020.