RIZAL COMMERCIAL Banking Corp. (RCBC) continued to boost its sustainable lending portfolio through credit for green and social projects related to transport, energy, water management, and housing.

RCBC said in a statement on Wednesday that its sustainable loan portfolio reached P52.165 billion in 2020. Broken down, P32.722 billion funded 15 eligible green projects and P19.432 billion went to 9,947 social projects.

More than half (61%) of its eligible green portfolio consists of renewable energy projects related to clean transportation and energy efficiency (18%), and sustainable water management (3%).

Meanwhile, its social portfolio includes affordable housing projects (36%), employment generation (32%), access to essential services (24%), and socioeconomic advancement and empowerment (8%).

“As the economy gradually rises from the ruins of the pandemic, RCBC will be a strong partner in support of the BSP (Bangko Sentral ng Pilipinas), not just in rebuilding, but in championing the ESG (Environmental, Social, and Governance) agenda and sustainable practices,” RCBC President and CEO Eugene S. Acevedo was quoted as saying.

In 2020, the bank said it will stop financing coal-fired power projects in the Philippines in support of the Department of Finance’s drive to hike the country’s share of renewable energy power source to 43%.

Meanwhile, the bank raised P17.8 billion through 2.5- and 5.25-year ASEAN sustainability bonds in March, which it said will be used to refinance green and social projects.

RCBC’s net income fell 7% to P5 billion in 2020 from P5.388 billion in 2019 as it ramped up loan loss provisions during the crisis.

Its shares closed at P17.14 apiece on Wednesday, down by 36 centavos or 2.06% from its previous finish. — LWTN