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China Green Finance Awards

Best green Chinese bank in overseas markets 2018

Bank of China

When it comes to an overseas presence, no Chinese rival can beat Bank of China. Since 2012, green credit financing, both onshore and offshore at the bank, has increased year by year. At the end of 2017, the bank’s green credit portfolio stood at Rmb727 billion ($113.6 billion), an increase of 11.5% year on year. The growth rate was higher than the average growth rate of the bank’s overall corporate credit balance.

The bank has issued three phases of green bonds in the international markets, totalling $5 billion and lending to companies engaged in building clean transport systems and technology, clean energy technology, and waste water treatment technology.

Chief among the foreign issues is a $1.5 billion issuance through the Paris branch, which includes fixed- and floating-interest rate varieties covering three currencies: the dollar, euro and renminbi, with tenors of three years and five years. That issuance, which is tied to an onshore emission reduction project, not only complied with the latest standards of the global Green Bond Principles guidelines, but was also certified by globally recognized Climate Bond Initiative’s labelling certification system. The issuance was the first three-currency green bond certified by the CBI organization.

In 2016, BoC branches in Luxembourg and New York issued green bonds at the same time, with a total issue size of roughly $3 billion and comprising a $2.25 billion issue, €500 million issue and Rmb1.5 billion issue. They were a credit-type green bond and are the largest for any offshore issuance to date in the global green bond market. The bonds were accredited by Ernst & Young’s green finance team and received its best GB-AAA ‘dark green’ rating. The issuance was incorporated into multiple mainstream green bond indices.

Moreover, the bank has been promoting green bond issues among non-Chinese issuers. Chief among the offshore successes is the bank’s cooperation with developers of the Indonesian Donggi-Senoro LNG project, a $2.9 natural gas liquefaction plant near Luwuk in Central Sulawesi, Indonesia, that has a capacity for two million tons of LNG and condensate a year. The bank has been a lead financier of syndicated loans to the project, which was partially funded through green bonds.

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