Sustainable finance in Turkey
“Changing Environments – Changing Finance? Sustainable Finance in Turkey” event organized by the Finance Initiative of the United Nations Environment Programme (UNEP FI) was held on 22 January 2009 in İstanbul, Turkey.
UNEP FI is a leading partnership between the global financial services sector and the United Nations. UNEP FI works closely with over 170 financial institutions and a range of partner organizations to develop and promote linkages between the environment, sustainability and financial performance.
Through regional activities, a comprehensive work programme, training programmes and research, UNEP FI carries out its mission to identify, promote, and realise the adoption of best environmental and sustainability practice at all levels of financial institution operations.
UNEP FI runs working groups for dedicated areas of financial services, e.g. asset management and insurance, as well as groups focusing on specific environmental topics that are expected to have strong linkages with financial services, such as climate change, water or biodiversity.
In addition, UNEP FI is dedicated to spread best practice in integrating sustainability into financial products and services into emerging markets. For this reason regional task forces have been established for emerging markets in order to hold workshops, develop training materials and undertake research e.g. on environmental credit risk management, green banking and insurance products etc.
In Central, Eastern and Southeastern Europe UNEP FI has formed a task force to raise awareness and provide training for financial institutions in this particular region. As part of this mission UNEP FI came to Istanbul for a half-day event to explain the linkages between sustainable development and finance and to demonstrate current best practice within Turkey, but also from the wider region.
Institutions leading in sustainable finance in Turkey such as Industrial Development Bank of Turkey (TSKB), İşbank and Vakıfbank presented on their initiatives on new business opportunities such as financing environmental projects or developing new banking and investment products with sustainability components.
Members of the UNEP FI Task Force offered further expertise from the wider region on environmental credit risk management, green banking and insurance products and internal environmental management for financial institutions.
The event was kindly hosted by Yapı Kredi Bank.