I would really like to thank the organizers; it is a satisfaction to be here these days, 2 years after the signature of the landmark Paris settlement. The European Union played a main position in driving forward this settlement. This places a special duty on our shoulders to guide by means of an instance in its implementation.
One hundred seventy nations have ratified the Paris agreement by means of now, which sends a powerful sign that the low-carbon transition is right here to live. We are simply at the start of this adventure, but there’s plenty motive to be hopeful. We can show that there’s no contradiction between sustainability and monetary increase: In the last 27 years, EU emissions dropped via over 20%, but our economic system grew through more than 50% over the equal period.
The EU is dedicated to decreasing carbon emissions via forty percentage by way of 2030. To reach that target, we will want round one hundred eighty billion euro in extra yearly low-carbon investments. This is well beyond the capacity of the general public region, so personal capital may also want to play its element.
The accurate news is that that is the big potential of our economic system: collectively, asset managers and institutional investors manipulate approximately 35 trillion euros in Europe. But for private investors to fund the transition to the low-carbon financial system, we want to put in the location the right situations and incentives.
What does this imply?
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It manner providing considers in inexperienced economic merchandise, by means of giving clean and dependable records to people who put money into them.
It approaches enhancing get admission to for retail buyers and assisting institutional buyers to direct their capital closer to an extended-term effect.
And its approaches incentivizing marketplace members to be more conscious of long-term risks and opportunities.
Both at EU level and national level, a few paintings are already carried out. And I’m pleased that nations like Sweden, France, and Luxembourg have already got guidelines and labels to attract sustainable funding.
At EU level, we have already taken first steps:
For instance, as of subsequent yr, our directive on non-economic disclosure will take effect. This is in keeping with the tips of the Task-Force on Climate-Related Disclosures. And its way that large indexed organizations can have to reveal statistics that investors need to assess sustainability dangers.
And in advance this yr, we proposed a main revamp of financial supervision within the EU. Among different things, it’d integrate sustainability into the mandate of the European Supervisory Authorities, to position pressure on the financial sector to address these troubles.
But for our attempt to prevail, we want more than a bit by way of the piece, region-by means of-zone approach. Other parts of the world are forging in advance on this subject. We want to use the overall scale of the EU’s unmarried market and appeal to inexperienced investment with new products and commercial enterprise models.
At the European Commission, we’ve established a High-Level Expert Group on Sustainable Finance, so one can gift its very last hints in January. On that foundation, we can present in March a complete Action Plan to put the foundations for sustainable and green finance to reach its authentic capacity. Without prejudging the outcome, I can say that the work could be in 3 guidelines:
First, we can suggest combining sustainability elements into funding mandates. This way these standards will be contemplated in the duties that asset managers and institutional traders have in the direction of those whose money they manage. This might make clear their criminal obligation to issue sustainability dangers into capital allocation decisions.
Second, buyers need a commonplace language and type gadget for what’s considered inexperienced and sustainable. After all, if we’re telling investors to pick green products, we need to recognize what the ones appear to be. Our goal is to have an EU taxonomy – or a classification system – for sustainable finance. This is an important circumstance for sustainable finance to attain scale. And it’d allow us to define EU requirements and labels for Green Bonds and Green Investment Funds. This could additionally allow us to cope with marketplace fragmentation and boost up inexperienced investments with the aid of all styles of investors.
Thirdly, European banks play a chief function in financing the economy. To incentivize lending, we’re looking undoubtedly at the European Parliament’s proposal to amend capital prices for banks to boost green investments and loans by means of introducing a so-referred to the as inexperienced assisting element. This might be carried out before everything degree with the aid of decreasing capital necessities for certain climate-pleasant investments, which includes energy-green mortgages or electric vehicles. We may want to version it on present capital requirement adjustments for investments in SMEs or terrific infrastructure projects.
To finish, those are some of the bold measures we are planning in our Action Plan. We ought to act quickly to place Europe and our economic region as the main worldwide destination for investments in green technological improvement.
I turned into very thrilled to see how a good deal dedication and what sort of willingness there may be from the contributors of the broader financial system to move toward the low-carbon future and to make economic markets greater sustainable. What we want to do is to incentivize inexperienced finance across the complete investment chain, and alternate the thoughts-set of people who control our money. And we see that that is already occurring, in order that is ideal information. The European Commission is fully devoted to this aim, because we trust we need to work collectively, at EU-level, but also at country wide and local level, to supply the low-carbon transition.
To keep this discussion, the Commission may be establishing an excessive stage convention on 22 March next 12 months targeted on the position of financial services inside the transition to a sustainable financial system. This can also be an occasion to present out Action Plan on Sustainable Finance. I accept as true as it will likely be every other proof of Europe’s ambition to take the global lead on sustainable finance.