The CEO Roundtable of Tanzania (CEOrt) in partnership with the International Union for Conservation of Nature (IUCN), through its SUSTAIN-Africa Initiative are working out a financing model that will give priority to projects that will not have negative impacts on the environment while at the same time helping Tanzania’s financial inclusion endeavors.
In September 2019, partners drawn from financial institutions, development agencies, government and experts on sustainable finance took part in a workshop organized by the CEO Roundtable and IUCN in Dar es Salaam, Tanzania.
The workshop aimed to: Strengthen the business case for investing in business opportunities that prioritize environmental and social sustainability; discuss the draft Sustainable Financial Principles (SFPs) for Tanzania; agree on a process for adoption and implementation of the proposed Sustainable Banking Principles; get commitment from Tanzanian banks in support of the Sustainable Banking Principles.
“We aim to raise financial sector awareness of the environmental and social risks associated with the business-as-usual approach. We also seek to increase transparency and consistency in the implementation of policies for sustainable environmental and social management in business activities and operations,” Said CEOrt Chairperson Sanjay Rughani.
The draft of the SFPs is a first step towards implementing the joint Business and Sustainability Strategy (2019/2021) of CEOrt and IUCN. When the banking principles become applicable, they will guide the finance sector to support sustainable development. Said IUCN Regional Programme Coordinator for Eastern and Southern Africa.
H.E. Jeroen Verheul, Ambassador of the Kingdom of Netherlands in Tanzania said: “Business entities should invest in businesses that offer bankable solutions to environment and social challenges. This requires identifying and investing in opportunities or clients that promote the use of advanced technologies, low carbon activities and risk management practices.”
The principles will clearly show which project is viable to be financed and avoid non-performing loans challenges, added IUCN’s Charles Oluchina.
Why the Sustainable Financial Principles SFPs?
The Sustainable Financial Principles (SFPs) were developed by IUCN and CEOrt with technical research and input from VBDO, the Dutch Association of Investors for Sustainable Development. They result from preliminary engagement of financial sector actors from Tanzania in 2018 and are intended as a starting point for developing, adopting and implementing Sustainable Finance Principles in Tanzania. The principles have been inspired by a number of national, regional and global initiatives striving to guide financial sector contributions to sustainable development especially the Nigerian, South African and Kenyan Banking principles as well as the UNEP FI principles for responsible banking .