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BSP studying climate change impact

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THE CENTRAL BANK is looking into the effects of climate change on its operations as it develops a roadmap for sustainability in the financial system, an official said.

“The Bangko Sentral ng Pilipinas (BSP) is currently conducting a study on the assessment on the impact of climate change and environment related factors to BSP offices and operations,” BSP Managing Director for Policy and Specialized Supervision Lyn I. Javier said in an e-mail.

“The results of these studies will feed into the development of the BSP’s Roadmap for Sustainable Central Banking that will foster environmentally responsible and sustainable policies and work practices,” she added.

The BSP in April unveiled its sustainability framework for financial players and gave firms a three-year leeway to adopt its provisions.

Since the framework was released, the central bank has carried out capacity-building activities for banks as they could be in different stages of implementing its provisions.

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“While some banks are in more advanced stages in terms of integrating sustainability principles in their strategic direction and business operations, some are still at the initial stages in this space,” Ms. Javier said.

Potential regulatory incentives for banks engaging in sustainable financing are still being studied by the BSP, she added.

“These incentives, if any, will take into account international best practices and standards as well as relevant domestic developments,” Ms. Javier said.

BSP Governor Benjamin E. Diokno last year said they are considering counting lending for green projects as compliance with Republic Act 10000 or the Agri-Agra Reform Credit Act, under which banks must allocate 25% of their loanable funds for the development of the agriculture and agrarian reform sector.

International nonprofit Climate Bonds Initiative in November cited the Philippines as a regional leader for sustainable finance on the back of efforts from the government, banks and businesses. — L.W.T. Noble

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