Principles for Responsible Banking

Principles for Responsible Banking

On September 22-23, 2019, during the annual United Nations General Assembly in New York, USA, 130 banks from 49 different countries co-signed the six Principles for Responsible Banking (PRB), as part of the United Nations Environment Program-Finance Initiative (UNEP-FI); while to date the number of banks that have co-signed the PRBs amounts to more than 180.

Through this pioneering move, the co-signatory Banks are committed to aligning themselves with the UN Sustainable Development Goals by defining time-bound actions that will address the objectives of the Paris Agreement on climate change with social sensitivity and responsibility, working with clients, assessing the impact of their activities on the environment and society, setting improvement goals, and promoting corporate governance, transparency, and accountability.

The HFSF, strategic shareholder of the four systemic banks, endorsed the United Nations Environment Program’s Principles and was included in the list of 170+ bodies that have co-signed them to date. The Fund, adopting the Principles for Responsible Banking, confirms in practice its active support to the Greek Systemic Banks for the implementation of these Principles.

The United Nations Environment Program’s Principles for Responsible Banking aim to align banks’ business decisions with the goals and needs of society. The six Principles provide the framework for a socially responsible banking system, thus leading to a positive contribution of the banking system to society as a whole. The Principles attach great importance to transparency regarding the way in which banking products and services create value for customers, investors, and society at large, while at the same time having a positive impact on the environment.

The 6 Principles for Responsible Banking:

We will align our business strategy to be consistent with and contribute to individuals’ needs and society’s goals, as expressed in the Sustainable Development Goals, the Paris Climate Agreement and relevant national and regional frameworks.
We will continuously increase our positive impacts while reducing the negative impacts on, and managing the risks to, people and environment resulting from our activities, products and services. To this end, we will set and publish targets where we can have the most significant impacts.
We will work responsibly with our clients and our customers to encourage sustainable practices and enable economic activities that create shared prosperity for current and future generations.
We will proactively and responsibly consult, engage and partner with relevant stakeholders to achieve society’s goals.
We will implement our commitment to these Principles through effective governance and a culture of responsible banking.
We will periodically review our individual and collective implementation of these Principles and be transparent about and accountable for our positive and negative impacts and our contribution to society’s goals.