09.07.2021

The NSSMC approved Recommendations on the implementation or financing of environmental projects by issuing green bonds at its meeting on 07.07.2021.

Key signs of green bonds are defined by the European Union Green Bond Standard (EU GBS) and the International Capital Markets Association Green Bond Principles (GBP).

The development of the green bond market in Ukraine is consistent with the European provisions and provides for:

  • reorienting capital flows to sustainable investments to achieve sustainable and inclusive growth,
  • management of financial risks arising from climate change, depletion of resources, environmental degradation and social problems,
  • promoting transparency in finance and the economy as a whole with a focus on long-term profits.

Emerging sectors of green financing in Ukraine are:

  • energy (low-carbon production, energy efficiency, energy storage, smart grids, sustainable access to energy sources),
  • water (collection, cleaning, storage, wastewater treatment, access to water),
  • buildings (low carbon strategy, energy efficiency, sustainable materials, green buildings),
  • agriculture (land management, low-carbon and adaptation strategies, biomass, biofuels),
  • transport (energy-efficient components, fuel and logistics),
  • air and ecology (carbon credits, trade and compensation),
  • production (green chemistry, resource and energy-efficient supply chains, cleaner production),
  • waste and recycling (reuse and waste recycling services).

Taking into account international principles, the NSSMC prepared recommendations and key features of the green bond model issued in Ukraine:

  • compliance with the project, under which funds are attracted by issuing green bonds, internationally recognized by the commission,
  • targeted use of proceeds from the placement of green bonds
  • issuer’s reporting on the impact of these projects on the environment,
  • involvement by the issuer of an external independent controller (verifier),
  • the issuer has his own policy on green bonds.

The key point is the compliance of the project financed / refinanced with the funds from the placement of green bonds, the Taxonomy for Sustainable Activities.

Thus, the issuer of green bonds should ensure the proper implementation of all key features. This helps protect investors’ interests and increase investment in green bonds.

Failure to comply with at least one of the identified features is a reason not to classify bonds as green. An attempt to classify bonds as green if they do not meet the key characteristics gives grounds to regard it as greenwashing.

Greenwashing is a deliberate misleading of investors and government agencies regarding the use of funds received from the issue of green bonds. To prevent the facts of greenwashing  and there was a need to develop international standards and the formation of countries’ own recommendations.

Background:

Green bonds are defined as any type of bond whose proceeds will be used solely to finance or refinance new and / or existing eligible green projects that have clear environmental benefits.

In other respects, green bonds are similar to regular bonds. In particular, pricing and costs are similar, bonds are listed, traded and regulated in the same way as other securities of this type.

Green bond issuers can be private companies and financial institutions, international development banks, municipalities, the state.

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