“QNB green bond a sign of what’s to come as Gulf embraces ESG” – S&P Global – November 4, 2020

On November 4, 2020 S&P Global reported that “Qatar National Bank (QPSC)’s $600 million green bond issuance is a sign of growing investor demand for these instruments and could presage further activity in the Gulf Cooperation Council, with growing interest and awareness within corporate boardrooms.

In the Gulf, sustainable development is increasingly important as governments focus on environmental, social and governance issues and attempt to implement strategic vision plans to diversify their economies, which include measures to boost renewable energy generation.

QNB’s maiden green bond was the largest such issuance by a commercial GCC bank and only the second from a commercial lender in the region since 2017, when National Bank of Abu Dhabi, now First Abu Dhabi Bank PJSC, or FAB, issued its green bond.”

You may read the article on the S&P Global internet site.

“P&G Shareholders Overwhelmingly Pass a Deforestation-Related Resolution to Mitigate Material Financial Risk” – Chain Reaction Research – November 3, 2020

On November 3, 2020 Chain Reaction Research reported that “(i)n an unprecedented move, BlackRock voted in favor of a shareholder resolution requesting an assessment report to identify further opportunities to combat deforestation and degradation of intact forests in Proctor & Gamble (P&G) supply chains. BlackRock, State Street, and Vanguard, the “Big Three” asset managers, have a combined USD 62 billion in P&G stakes (as of Q1 2020), and as such, have been under substantial pressure from activists and environmental organizations to support the resolution. More than 382,000 people signed a petition calling P&G to stop deforestation and intact forest degradation for toilet paper production. Activists protested outside the P&G Cincinnati headquarters, and environmental organizations engaged P&G shareholders. Meanwhile, the P&G board recommended that investors vote against the proposal, expressing satisfaction with existing deforestation policies.

After the resolution passed by 67 percent, BlackRock released a statement with its rationale for supporting the proposal: “As a long-term investor, the reputational and operational risks faced by companies being implicated in deforestation allegations is concerning to us.” BlackRock’s statement also highlighted an opportunity for P&G to further align its responsible forestry disclosures with the Task Force on Climate-Related Financial Disclosures (TCFD) framework and the Sustainability Accounting Standards Board (SASB) standards.”

You may read the article on the Chain Reaction Research internet site.