Delivering change together with clients and customers
“I don’t see a bank doing business in the future without considering the importance of sustainability.”
– René Grullón Finet, Senior Vice President of National and International Business, Banco Popular Dominicano, Dominican Republic
At the heart of every bank are the relationships it has with its clients and customers. Signatory banks have been bringing clients and customers into their journey towards greater responsibility and sustainability.
Together with their retail customers they have been exploring the potential their money has to make a difference. These programmes range from websites for the public, to sustainability-focused advice sessions and new products that make it easier for customers to make environmentally responsible purchases or investments.
With their corporate clients, signatories have been engaging them on their environmental and social impacts. They are working with them to explore their exposure to climate and environmental risks, for example, and helping develop viable transition strategies.
Listening and engaging more
Some banks have consulted their retail customers for the first time to understand their expectations and needs. The insight gathered is being ploughed back into the creation of new products.
With corporate clients, relationship managers are increasingly asking for sustainability-related data to assess their borrowers’ climate risks. They are then ranking the most vulnerable clients and entering into strategic dialogues to assess adaptation strategies.
Driving positive behaviours and sustainable transitions
Signatory banks are using other levers available to them to drive change, for example offering favourable rates to companies that commit to buying environmentally friendly products. These might be new loans to encourage the purchase of electric or hybrid vehicles and solar panels.
Some banks have introduced sustainability-based frameworks for loan decision-making that enable them to focus on specific sustainability priorities, such as the low carbon economy.
One national bank has responded to corporate client demand for more impactful products by piloting a new sustainability-linked loan programme.
One bank implemented a new sustainable financing framework to enable them to respond to relevant customer demands. This allows the bank to review any new financing opportunities for alignment with its low carbon economy goals.
One bank developed a new financial education programme specifically aimed at people buying cars to prevent socially disadvantaged customers from being taken advantage of by questionable car dealers.
One bank launched a deposit programme that gives favourable pricing to customers that commit to increasing their positive environmental impact while a customer.
One bank developed a financial product to facilitate a government-led plan for national energy transition through the purchase of solar water heaters.