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BCE announces Sustainable Financing Framework

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·4 min read
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Reflecting our goal to achieve the highest environmental, social and governance standards.

MONTRÉAL, April 29, 2021 /PRNewswire/ - As part of our commitment to environmental, social and governance (ESG) leadership, BCE Inc. (TSX: BCE) (NYSE: BCE) today announced a new Sustainable Financing Framework to guide its future issuances of green, social and sustainability bonds and other sustainable financings that will provide capital for investments with positive environmental and social impacts.

"Our commitment to environmental sustainability and investments in our customers, our team and the communities we serve is critical to Bell's goal to advance how Canadians connect with each other and the world," said Mirko Bibic, President and CEO of BCE Inc. and Bell Canada. "Our Sustainable Financing Framework is a concrete step to ensure the highest ESG standards are reflected in all our sustainable financing initiatives as part of a holistic approach across our business."

Under the framework, BCE will provide ongoing reporting and transparency to investors and other stakeholders, including annual updates on allocation and impact metrics until the net proceeds of a sustainable financing are fully allocated to eligible green and/or social projects.

The BCE Sustainable Financing Framework has been reviewed by Sustainalytics, a global leader in providing ESG research and analysis. Sustainalytics issued a second party opinion confirming that BCE's Sustainable Financing Framework aligns with the International Capital Markets Association's Green and Social Bond Principles and Sustainability Bond Guidelines, along with the Loan Market Association's and the Loan Syndications and Trading Associations' Green Loan Principles.

The Sustainable Financing Framework links to several of the United Nations Sustainable Development Goals, designed to support positive environmental and social impacts in our communities and across the country. BMO Capital Markets and Bank of America acted as structuring agents for the Sustainable Financing Framework.

A copy of BCE's Sustainable Financing Framework, the second party opinion from Sustainalytics and further information on our sustainability strategy can be found at BCE.ca.

About BCE
BCE is Canada's largest communications company, providing advanced Bell broadband wireless, TV, Internet and business communications services alongside the country's premier content creation and media assets from Bell Media. To learn more, please visit Bell.ca or BCE.ca.

Bell supports the social and economic prosperity of our communities with a focus on achieving the highest environmental, social and governance (ESG) standards. We measure our progress in increasing environmental sustainability, achieving a diverse and inclusive workplace, leading data governance and protection, and building stronger and healthier communities. This includes confronting the challenge of mental illness with the Bell Let's Talk initiative, which drives mental health awareness and action with programs like the annual Bell Let's Talk Day and Bell funding for community care, research and workplace programs nationwide all year round.

Media inquiries:
Marie-Eve Francoeur
514-391-5263
marie-eve.francoeur@bell.ca
@Bell_News

Investor inquiries:
Richard Bengian
514-786-8219
richard.bengian@bell.ca

Caution Concerning Forward-Looking Statements
Certain statements made in this news release are forward-looking statements, including statements relating to our strategies, goals, objectives and plans, the intended use of proceeds of future financings, and other statements that are not historical facts. All such forward-looking statements are made pursuant to the "safe harbor" provisions of applicable Canadian securities laws and of the United States Private Securities Litigation Reform Act of 1995. Forward-looking statements are subject to inherent risks and uncertainties and are based on several assumptions which give rise to the possibility that actual results or events could differ materially from our expectations. These statements are not guarantees of future performance or events, and we caution you against relying on any of these forward-looking statements. The forward-looking statements contained in this news release describe our expectations at the date of this news release and, accordingly, are subject to change after such date. Except as may be required by applicable securities laws, we do not undertake any obligation to update or revise any forward-looking statements contained in this news release, whether as a result of new information, future events or otherwise. For additional information on assumptions and risks underlying certain of our forward-looking statements made in this news release, please consult BCE's 2020 Annual MD&A dated March 4, 2021 (included in BCE's 2020 Annual Report), as updated in BCE's 2021 First Quarter MD&A dated April 28, 2021 and BCE's news release dated April 29, 2021 announcing its 2021 first quarter results, filed by BCE with the Canadian provincial securities regulatory authorities (available at Sedar.com) and with the U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission (available at SEC.gov). These documents are also available at BCE.ca.

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SOURCE Bell Canada