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ESG Investor Days at Center-invest Bank

Center-invest Bank hosted an ESG foresight session, attended by representatives of investment funds, audit and consulting firms, development institutions, the Russian Central Bank, the Moscow Exchange and banking associations, as well as shareholders, employees and customers of the bank.

During a two-day investment forum, specialists from Center-invest Bank presented their experience of applying ESG principles in their work. They also spoke about the investment potential of southern Russia’s economy.

Globally, companies applying ESG principles have assets exceeding USD80tn, while investment funds with an ESG approach manage assets in excess of USD30tn.

"Bank loans for energy efficiency projects have already reduced carbon dioxide emissions by almost 200,000 tonnes, which is equivalent to planting about 8 million trees," said Dr Vasily Vysokov, Chairman of the Board of Directors of Center-invest Bank. "Lending to agribusiness has enabled companies to introduce new technologies and to increase not only grain production, but also grain exports. As well as providing finance, our focus on working with small businesses includes "nurturing" the new generation of entrepreneurs through the Accelerator League."

Almost 90% of the bank’s income comes from the real economy, 40% of which is received by depositors, 17% by partners, and 19% by employees and the government, with 23% allocated to the bank’s development.

Thanks to Center-invest Bank loans for the renovation of apartment buildings, over 40,000 people have improved their living conditions.

As part of its development strategy, the bank is digitalising ESG principles within its operations, and it is also working with government agencies and customers on digital economy projects.

In the first half of 2019, under ESG programmes, Center-invest Bank issued RUB30bn in loans that will contribute to achieving the Sustainable Development Goals, and approximately RUB40bn in loans for the implementation of Russia’s national projects. This included almost RUB20bn under government-backed programmes.

Forum participants praised Center-invest Bank’s integrated approach and methods of implementing ESG principles in its work, and the practical results achieved. The programme included meetings with business representatives, a visit to the Financial Literacy Centre, and meetings at customers’ operations in Rostov-on-Don and the Aksai and Azov districts.