Groupe BPCE and Natixis make climate action and sustainability central to its business through Principles for Responsible Banking

Paris, France, September 23, 2019
ESR

Groupe BPCE and Natixis 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, Groupe BPCE and Natixis 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 UN 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 UN.

“The UN Principles for Responsible Banking are a guide for the global banking industry to respond to, drive and benefit from a sustainable development economy.  The Principles create the accountability that can realize responsibility, and the ambition that can drive action.” said UN Secretary-General António Guterres at the launch event, attended by the 130 Founding Signatories and over 45 of their CEOs.

As expressed in the Principles for Responsible Banking, Groupe BPCE and Natixis are convinced 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, we commit 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”.

“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 solution, everybody wins in the long-term.”

The Principles for Responsible Banking are supported by a strong implementation and accountability framework. By signing them, Groupe BPCE and Natixis commits to being transparent on both our positive and negative impact on people and planet. 

Groupe BPCE and Natixis will focus where it has the greatest impact – in its core business – and set, publish and implement ambitious targets to scale up positive and address any negative impacts in line with global and local goals.

“Through its support for UNEP FI, Groupe BPCE with Banque Populaire, Caisse d’Epargne and Natixis will strengthen its activities to focus on a more inclusive finance and a long term sustainable economy. With this new framework, our group will fully embrace its role as a responsible banker, in accordance with the "Principles for Responsible Banking » and following its values, will be able to actively contribute to the changes needed for a sustainable society, in all its businesslines and wherever it operates.” said Laurent Mignon– Chairman of the Management Board and CEO of Groupe BPCE

“Strongly committed to fostering green and sustainable growth, Natixis is proud to be part of the core group of 30 Founding Banks that have contributed to design the Principles for Responsible Banking. We are convinced that the financial industry has a major role to play in the transition towards a low-carbon economy. For this reason, we support our clients’ sustainable development, on a daily basis and in all our business lines.” said François Riahi, CEO of Natixis

The Principles for Responsible Banking will provide Groupe BPCE and Natixis with an effective framework to systematically identify and seize new business opportunities created by the emerging sustainable development economy, while at the same time enabling the bank to effectively identify and address related risks.

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

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

Groupe BPCE operates a universal cooperative banking model represented by 9 million cooperative shareholders and is the second-largest banking group in France. Through its 105,000 staff, the Group serves 30 million clients - individuals, professionals, companies, investors, and local government bodies – around the world. It operates in the retail banking and insurance fields in France via its two large networks, Banque Populaire and Caisse d’Epargne, along with Banque Palatine. With Natixis, it also runs global asset management, corporate & investment banking and payments business lines. The Group leverages these extensive capabilities to offer a comprehensive and diversified array of deposits & savings, cash management, financing, insurance and investment solutions. Groupe BPCE is recognized for its financial solidity by four major financial rating agencies: Moody’s (A1, outlook stable), Standard & Poor’s (A+, outlook stable), Fitch (A+, outlook stable) and R&I (A, outlook positive).

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 250 finance institutions around the globe.

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