Thursday 18th June 2020 – The EACB welcomes the final adoption of the Sustainable Finance Taxonomy Regulation today. This unified classification system is setting harmonised criteria to determine whether an economic activity is environmentally sustainable. It is the cornerstone of the EU Action Plan for financing a sustainable economy.
The EACB has been closely involved in the dialogue and consultations around this piece of legislation. “Co-operative banks are key players in green and sustainable finance at local level. We brought our expertise in the formulation of the technical screening criteria and look forward to continue being involved in the process, in particular in the consultation on the delegated acts. We need a workable and easy to use framework in particular around “transition” and “enabling” activities” in order to accelerate the shift to sustainability”. Commented Bouke de Vries, Chair of the EACB Green & Sustainable Finance working group and Lead of Rabobank’s Climate Program.
The taxonomy also introduces new obligations both for large financial and non-financial companies under the NFRD (Non Financial Reporting Directive) to disclose the percentage of their activities that is environmentally sustainable. For financial companies this seems to raise challenges as it will require availability of corporate clients data that is currently rather limited and scattered. While the extension of the scope of the taxonomy regulation to large issuers covered by the NFRD (Non-Financial Reporting Directive), will generate traction, open questions remain.
More in general there is currently limited availability of high quality, comparable , reliable and public ESG data, insufficient yet to unleash the full potential of sustainable finance in the EU. This is why together with five trade associations representing the financial industry the EACB has launched a call for EU action to create a EU ESG data register.
As underlined by Hervé Guider, EACB General Manager. “ The creation of a EU ESG electronic data register should be regarded as an EU strategic infrastructure project to meet the EU Sustainability objectives both under the Action Plan on Sustainable Finance and the EU Green Deal. Such a data register provides a valuable source of information to markets and policy makers alike”.
EACB Members are looking forward to bring their knowledge and expertise on the next steps of this landmark piece of legislation.
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Ms E. Bevilacqua (email@example.com)