WINDHOEK - On 5 March 2019, Bank Windhoek was awarded the Green Bond Pioneer Award by Climate Bonds Initiative at the 4th Annual Green Bond Pioneer Awards (GBPA), announced before an international audience in London on the eve of the 2019 Climate Bonds Annual Conference. The Climate Bonds Initiative is an investor-focused not-for-profit, promoting large-scale investment in the low-carbon economy.
The GBPA are the premier annual recognition of achievement by organisations, financial institutions, governments and individuals who have demonstrated leadership through pioneering initiatives and green issuance, providing positive examples of climate resilient and low carbon investment in a diverse range of nations and markets. According to the Climate Bonds Initiative, the 2019 Green Bond Pioneer Awards recognises organisations, institutions and governments who are taking the lead in mobilising green finance, to create and attract climate investment whilst building market confidence.
“We are seeing emerging economies stepping up their efforts and taking active regional roles, demonstrating much needed leadership. To reach the vital goal of the first trillion US dollars in annual global green finance, there needs to be an increased focus on capital flows to emerging economies into the 2020’s. The recipients of the 2019 Awards, like Bank Windhoek, are at the forefront of this climate finance challenge. We thank these pioneers for demonstrating to the world that green finance is the tool to get us there,” said Sean Kidney, CEO, of Climate Bonds Initiative.
In addition to receiving the GBPA, Bank Windhoek is a recipient of a Certificate of Recognition for issuing the first green bond from Namibia. Baronice Hans, Managing Director of Bank Windhoek said of the achievement, “The Bank Windhoek Green Bond is the result of individuals within the Bank who are passionate about the work they do, in protecting the environment and contributing toward the wellbeing of the country in which we do business. Our Treasury Team have gone beyond the call of duty in initiating this sustainable opportunity for Namibia,” she concluded.
Claire Hobbs, Chief Treasurer at Bank Windhoek said, “As a member of Capricorn Group, Bank Windhoek aims to become the Green Financier of choice for sustainability projects in Namibia and countries in which the Group operates. As the only locally owned commercial bank in Namibia, Bank Windhoek shares the responsibility to protect our country for future generations by actively contributing to and facilitating the transition to a low-carbon and climate resilient economy.
As such, the Bank seeks sources of funding for its green lending activities by raising funds in the debt market through a local Green Bond Issuance, from which the proceeds are used to finance eligible green projects and assets throughout Namibia. We want to thank the Climate Bonds Initiative and the committee for this recognition of our climate action green efforts.” In December 2018, Bank Windhoek’s Green Bond was issued to international acclaim when it listed on the Namibia Stock Exchange. The Bank Windhoek Green Bond complies with the Sustainable Stock Exchanges (SSE) Initiative, a UN Partnership Programme of the UN Conference on Trade and Development (UNCTAD), and the UN Global Compact.
Bank Windhoek developed a Green Bond Framework that meets the highest standards of transparency and disclosure. In order to ensure the credibility of the Bank Windhoek Green Bond programme, the Framework is developed based on the International Capital Market Association’s (ICMA) Green Bond Principles (GBP) and the Definitions and Metrics for Climate Related Activities of the International Finance Cooperation (IFC). Bank Windhoek aligned the framework with the ICMA Green Bond Principles (GBP) in order to support the strong growth of our Sustainable Finance portfolio, and to meet the green funding needs. The ICMA Green Bond Principles are a set of voluntary guidelines that recommend transparency and disclosure and promote integrity in the development of the Green Bond market by clarifying the approach for issuing a Green Bond. This core document also acts as a framework for what projects are eligible under the use of proceeds, how they are selected, the management of proceeds and reporting.
The Bank Windhoek Green Bond Framework exemplifies how Bank Windhoek proposes to raise additional funding through the Green Bond issuance and to use its proceeds for green projects in accordance with the green eligibility criteria set out in this Green Bond framework.