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BNP Paribas Reinforces Climate Action and Sustainability Central to its Business through Principles for Responsible Banking

Also Joins UNEP FI’s Collective Commitment to Climate Action

NEW YORK, Sept. 23, 2019 (GLOBE NEWSWIRE) -- BNP Paribas, a leading European provider of banking and financial services, today became one of the Founding Signatories of the Principles for Responsible Banking, committing to strategically align its business with the Sustainable Development Goals and the Paris Agreement on Climate Change.

By signing the Principles for Responsible Banking, BNP Paribas joins a coalition of 130 banks worldwide, representing over USD 47 trillion in assets, in committing to taking on a crucial role in helping to achieve a sustainable future. Taking place at the start of the United Nations General Assembly, the official launch of the Principles for Responsible Banking marked the beginning of the most significant partnership to date between the global banking industry and the United Nations (UN).

As expressed in the Principles for Responsible Banking, BNP Paribas believes that “only in an inclusive society founded on human dignity, equality and the sustainable use of natural resources can our clients, customers and businesses thrive.” By signing up to the Principles, BNP Paribas commits to “using our products, services and relationships to support and accelerate the fundamental changes in our economies and lifestyles necessary to achieve shared prosperity for both current and future generations.”

Jean-Laurent Bonnafé, Director and Chief Executive Officer of BNP Paribas, said, “We are proud to be a founding member of UNEP FI’s Principles for Responsible Banking. This initiative is the first in which such a large, global coalition of banks has committed to align their business strategies to the UN’s Sustainable Development Goals and the Paris Climate Agreement. The Principles represent an important, collective step forward which will enable us to take further action on climate change and build a more sustainable and inclusive economy.”

The Principles for Responsible Banking are supported by a strong implementation and accountability framework. By signing them, BNP Paribas commits to being transparent regarding its impact on people and the planet. The Bank will focus where it has the greatest impact – in its core business – and set, publish and implement ambitious targets to promote positive impact in line with global and local goals.

“A banking industry that plans for the risks associated with climate change and other environmental challenges can not only drive the transition to low-carbon and climate-resilient economies, it can benefit from it,” said Inger Andersen, Executive Director of the United Nations Environment Programme (UNEP). “When the financial system shifts its capital away from resource-hungry, brown investments to those that back nature as a solution, everybody wins in the long-term.”

Collective Commitment to Climate Action

BNP Paribas also officially joined UNEP FI’s Collective Commitment to Climate Action today, which defines concrete and time-bound actions the Bank will take to scale up its contribution to and further align its lending with the objectives of the Paris Agreement on Climate.

In accordance with the Paris Agreement, BNP Paribas commits to align its portfolios to reflect and finance the low-carbon, climate-resilient economy required to limit global warming to well-below 2, striving for 1.5 degrees Celsius. BNP Paribas puts its commitments under the Principles for Responsible Banking into practice and builds on the pioneering Katowice Commitment, mobilizing products, services and relationships to help facilitate the economic transition necessary to achieve climate neutrality.

In 2011, BNP Paribas decided to place the fight against climate change at the forefront of its priorities. The Bank financed more than €15bn in renewable energy in 2018, and is among the top 3 issuers of green bonds in euros. At the end of 2018, the total financing provided by BNP Paribas that contributed to the energy transition and the SDGs was €168bn.

Please see the Principles for Responsible Banking and their Framework Documents here.

For a complete list of all banks that have become the Founding Signatories of the Principles for Responsible Banking today and quotes from CEOs please click here.

About the Principles for Responsible Banking
The Principles for Responsible Banking were developed by a core group of 30 Founding Banks through an innovative global partnership between banks and the UNEP Finance Initiative (UNEP FI). UNEP FI is the UN-private sector collaboration that includes membership of more than 240 finance institutions around the globe.

For more information, including infographics and videos, please visit https://www.unepfi.org/banking/bankingprinciples/. 

About BNP Paribas
BNP Paribas is a leading bank in Europe with an international reach. It has a presence in 72 countries, with more than 202,600 employees, of which almost 155,000 in Europe. The Group has key positions in its three main activities: Domestic Markets and International Financial Services (whose retail-banking networks and financial services are covered by Retail Banking & Services) and Corporate & Institutional Banking, which serves two client franchises: corporate clients and institutional investors. The Group helps all its clients (individuals, community associations, entrepreneurs, SMEs, corporates and institutional clients) to realize their projects through solutions spanning financing, investment, savings and protection insurance.

In Europe, the Group has four domestic markets (Belgium, France, Italy and Luxembourg) and BNP Paribas Personal Finance is the European leader in consumer lending.

BNP Paribas is rolling out its integrated retail-banking model in Mediterranean countries, in Turkey, in Eastern Europe and a large network in the western part of the United States. In its Corporate & Institutional Banking and International Financial Services activities, BNP Paribas also enjoys top positions in Europe, a strong presence in the Americas as well as a solid and fast-growing business in Asia-Pacific. https://group.bnpparibas/en/

Press contacts

Media Contact for UNEP FI:
Nader Rahman
+1 (718) 517-1684
nader.rahman@un.org

Simone Dettling
+41 229178721
Simone.dettling@un.org

Media Contacts for BNP Paribas:
Keely Gispan
+1 332 323 3705
Keely.gispan@us.bnpparibas.com   

Arnaud Fraboul
+33 785 160920
Arnaud.fraboul@bnpparibas.com