EBA supports EU Commission’s actions towards a more sustainable European economy

16 July 2020

  • The EBA strongly supports the Commission’s sustainable finance agenda and notes the requirement to embed environmental, social and governance (ESG) considerations into its own work;
  • The EBA argues for internationally consistent disclosures based on a comprehensive taxonomy to promote market disciple and ensure investor  and customer protection;
  • The EBA notes the need for a robust, evidence-based and risk-based regulatory framework and argues for a single EU data platform of ESG-related information to support evidence-based decision making by the public and private sector.

The European Banking Authority (EBA) published today its reponse to the European Commission’s consultation on a Renewed Sustainable Finance Strategy. The EBA is committed to ensuring the resilience and long-term sustainability of banking sector activities and welcomes the Commission’s efforts to support the transition towards a more sustainable, and resilient EU economy. The EBA looks forward to the adoption of the Commission’s Renewed Sustainable Finance Strategy and stands ready to contribute to its objectives set out in the European Green Deal.

In its response, the EBA agrees with a wide range of possible EU-level actions to support financing of the transition to a more sustainable European economy while appropriately managing the ESG risks in the financial sector and ensuring high standards of consumer protection. Given their unique position in facilitating capital flows through their lending, investment and advisory roles, credit institutions also have a key role to play in mobilising funds towards sustainable investments.

In support of the European Commission’s overall proposed initiatives the EBA highlights actions where further progress is particularly needed, notably in the following areas:

  • Disclosure
  • By promoting internationally consistent disclosures of key metrics such as the Green Asset Ratio to support the identification, assessment and measurement of sustainability financial risks and strategies to inform investors and consumers and promote market discipline;
  • By completing the EU taxonomy to cover all economic activities;
  • By supporting further standardisation and labelling for sustainable products to foster consumer protection.
  • Evidence based decision making
  • By emphasising the importance of the EBA providing risk-based evidence to inform any adjustments to the prudential treatment of sustainability related assets;
  • By encouraging the development of a single EU data platform to enable equal, user-friendly and timely access of public authorities and all market participants to publicly reported ESG information.
  • International cooperation
  • By further promoting regulatory convergence at an international level, helping to prevent potential negative spill-overs from policy fragmentation and limit arbitrage opportunities.

Legal basis and background

In April 2020, the European Commission published a consultation on the Renewed Sustainable Finance Strategy, which builds on the outcome of the work carried out in accordance with the Action Plan on Financing Sustainable Growth published in March 2018.

The response of the EBA to this consultation has been prepared pursuant to Article 1 (3) of the EBA's Regulation (as amended on 1 January 2020), which mandates the EBA to take into account sustainable business models and the integration of ESG factors in the field of activities of credit institutions, financial conglomerates, investment firms, payment institutions and e-money institutions[, to the extent necessary to ensure the effective and consistent application of its mandates.

 

Press contacts

Franca Rosa Congiu

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