Best green bond bank 2020
Agricultural Bank of China
All of the big four Chinese banks – Agricultural Bank of China, Bank of China, China Construction Bank and Industrial and Commercial Bank of China – have bet big on the green bond market. But ABC stands out for beating even its own lofty track record during our awards period.
The bank acted as the lead underwriter for 11 green bonds issued by nine borrowers in 2019; these raised a total of Rmb42.7 billion ($6 billion), or 22% of the market, with the result that the bank ranked first in the interbank bond market in terms of volume.
ABC also set an example that green bonds do not need to stop at the green label. It acted as the lead underwriter for Longyuan Power Group’s Rmb500 million green bond in September 2019. The deal also had a poverty release label, since part of the proceeds went to the clean-energy electronics wind project in Guizhou province, one of the poorest regions in China.
ABC achieved many other firsts during the year. It was the lead underwriter of Jiangsu Financial Leasing’s Rmb1.92 billion green bond in June 2019, the first green securitization issued by a financial leasing company.
It also priced a Rmb1.5 billion green bond for Capital Airport Holding in September, the first green bond by an airport company.
The bank’s subsidiary Agricultural Bank of China Financial Leasing sold a Rmb3 billion green bond in May 2019. The deal managed to attract buyers including the China Clean Development Mechanism Fund, which is known locally as a particularly picky investor when it comes to green bonds.