RIZAL Commercial Banking Corp. (RCBC) is set to offer local currency green bonds under its newly established framework to support local environmental and climate projects.
In a statement, the Yuchengco-led lender said it will be raising an undisclosed amount through peso-denominated green bonds, which will be issued under its new green finance framework.
This comes after RCBC announced on Monday the establishment of a green finance network which will support future fund-raising activities for environment-related projects.
The funding framework is first in the Philippines to be aligned with the Association of Southeast Asian Nations (ASEAN) Green Bond Standards 2018 by the ASEAN Capital Markets Forum, the bank said.
“Proceeds from any green financing under the framework will be used to finance or refinance a portfolio of green eligible projects relating to renewable energy, green buildings, clean transportation, energy efficiency and pollution prevention and control that contributes to the reduction of the environmental footprint in the Philippines,” RCBC previously told the local stock exchange.
RCBC tapped Hongkong and Shanghai Banking Corp. as the arranger of the issuance. It will be joined by ING Bank N.V. Manila branch, which will also act as the sole green structuring adviser for RCBC’s green finance framework.
RCBC Chief Executive Officer Gil A. Buenaventura said that through this initiative, the bank affirms its commitment to support environmental sustainability through its operations.
Domestic banks have been slowly venturing into the green financing market.
In the previous years, Sy-led lenders BDO Unibank, Inc. and China Banking Corp. raised $150 million each worth of green bonds to sole investor International Finance Corp.
RCBC posted a P3.2-billion net profit in the first nine months of 2018, down 5.9% from a year earlier. The country’s 10th biggest bank runs 509 branches and 1,593 automated teller machines nationwide as of end-September.
Shares in RCBC stood at P27 apiece, up 30 centavos or 1.12% from the previous close. — Karl Angelo N. Vidal