,16 March, 2005 | Warsaw, Poland On March 16, 2005 senior level representatives of the Polish financial sector came together for a half-day conference on the opportunities and risks of sustainability. The event was organised by the UNEP FI Central and Eastern European Task Force in collaboration with the European Bank for Reconstruction and Development (EBRD). In his keynote speech Krzysztof Bielecki, CEO of Poland’s largest private bank, Pekao SA, introduced the different aspects and opportunities of sustainability to his colleagues from Polish banks, investment companies, academia, consultancies and NGOs. Talks on environmental liabilities following EU Accession and the importance of environmental issues in privatisation transactions followed. EBRD and UNEP FI took the opportunity to present their programmes for the financial sector in Central and Eastern Europe. Bank Austria Creditanstalt presented their approach to environmental and social issues affecting their operations. The event closed with two talks on how environmental issues can affect company ratings as well as acquisition transactions. With over 60 participants and a good feedback from attendees of the day, the event was a successful start of the Task Force’s awareness raising programme in Central and Eastern Europe. Following the Warsaw event, the Task Force will host a series of awareness-raising conferences potentially in Russia, Kirgistan/Kazakhstan, Greece and the Baltic countries in 2005/2006.