Financing Our Future report launched

Financing Our Future report launched

A4S continues to emphasise the importance of sustainability in the financial world, in partnership with Aviva Investors

Financing Our Future report launched

This week it was announced that HRH The Prince of Wales’ Accounting for Sustainability Project (A4S) – in partnership with Aviva Investors – has launched their Financing Our Future report, with the focus of helping to build a global sustainable financial system.

The report “makes recommendations on how each part of the investment chain can take practical actions to move towards a sustainable global financial system that supports delivery of the UN Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) and on a pathway towards achieving the Paris Agreement.”

This was first referred to in the ‘Financing the 2030 Agenda for Sustainable Development’ session at the United Nations General Assembly (UNGA) in New York.

A4S was first established by HRH The Prince of Wales back in 2004, in order to normalise the involvement of sustainability in business within the world of finance. The three main global networks the organisation works with are the Chief Financial Officer Leadership, Accounting Bodies Network (ABN), and Asset Owners Network.

The report, also supported by Aon, was “first tabled” at the Finance Leaders’ Summit in July, where “over 60 Chairs, Chief Executive Officers, and Chief Investment Officers from global financial institutions attended and contributed to the recommendations.”

Joaquim Levy, Managing Director and The World Bank Group Chief Financial Officer, said: “The A4S Finance Leaders’ Summit offered a timely opportunity on new ways to mobilise finance to address climate change and fund the considerable mitigation and adaptation efforts required today.

“New evidence shows that infrastructure debt (especially in ‘green’ sectors) has a better risk profile than usually thought, and we are engaged with financial regulators on how that can help foster this asset class.”

The Finance Our Future report describes how the Summit was attended by the likes of “Bank of America, HSBC, the Bank of England, IOSCO, World Bank Group, BlackRock, Brookfield Asset Management, Moody’s, S&P Global, the Government Pension Investment Fund (Japan), BaFin, ABN Amro and Nordea.”

Levy continued: “We look forward to continuing this vital dialogue with investors, asset managers and representatives of savers at the high-level Investor Forum, which will take place on 29 November, in Buenos Aires, on the eve of Heads of State Summit.”

Jessica Fries, Executive Chairman for A4S, said: “This report comes at a pivotal time for the investment community. With the Business and Sustainable Development Commission estimating that achieving the SGDs will open up $12 trillion of market opportunities by 2030.”

Financing Our Future includes recommendations such as allocating funding to sustainable outcomes, adopting reporting standards, pricing externalities, and motivating people to act when enforcing sustainable measures.

Fries emphasised that “the action of one global financial leader is significant, but the potential for positive impact when acting in concert is immense and this is what [they] hoped to initiate with the recommendations within the Financing Our Future report.”

Other recommendations in the report include businesses building a compelling evidence base of various sustainable steps they have taken, as well as the development of consistent terminology. The report has identified actions that are currently already being taken in the world of finance, as well as the barriers that have prevented further progression in these existing areas.

Mark Wilson, Group CEO of Aviva Plc, concluded: “Business can be the greatest force for good on the planet, but we need to make sure the interests of individuals and organisations reflect the interests of society and our planet. His Royal Highness The Prince of Wales has shown consistent vision and leadership on these issues and I hope that by providing a practical guide for each part of the financial system, this document can act as a catalyst for change.”

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