FCB joins sustainability initiative

The bank said that in terms of environmental practices, in 2022, two of its branches began operating on solar energy as their primary power source.

FIRST Capital Bank Zimbabwe (FCBZ) has officially joined the international Sustainability Standards and Certification Initiative (SSCI) in a bid to unlock new funding through implementing environmental, social, and governance (ESG) standards.

SSCI is an initiative from the European Organisation for Sustainability Development (EOSD).

The initiative delivers a holistic, robust, evolving, and locally sensitive set of standards to make value-driven financial institutions more resilient and profitable.

According to EOSD, SSCI enables institutions to create new income streams and thrive for the long-term in an ever more volatile world, providing new opportunities for mobilising funds to finance businesses and projects creating high social and environmental impact.

Currently, there are billions of United States dollars available in funding for firms that adopt ESG practices in their organisations.

“The bank formally joined SSCI supported by European Organisation for Sustainability Development (EOSD) and is in the process of setting up the project,” FCBZ said, in a recent statement posted to the African Development Bank’s website.

“We are also cognisant of the fact that this is a journey which will be characterised by continuous improvement.”

EOSD is a German based organisation that was formed to promote the European Union’s strategy for sustainable development.

Promoting ESG practices is part of a global push to help stakeholders understand how an organisation is managing risks and opportunities related to environmental, social, and governance criteria (sometimes called ESG factors).

ESG takes the holistic view that sustainability extends beyond just environmental issues.

“Engaging stakeholders is a key priority in delivering our pledge to run a sustainable business. Our bank has established transparent structures and constructive engagements with stakeholders. These include our regulators, the investment community, our clients, and interest groups in the communities in which we operate,” FCBZ said.

“In our continuing engagement, we have held a dialogue with our clients and suppliers to support them in their efforts to meet ESG standards. Internally, we continue to build the capacity of bank staff, equipping them with skills to identify emerging and evolving ESG risks.”

The bank said that in terms of environmental practices, in 2022, two of its branches began operating on solar energy as their primary power source.

“In 2023, we commissioned the construction of a 5 Star green-rated new head office that will serve the environment in a sustainable manner. For us, these are exciting steps as we journey towards our goal of contributing to the reduction of our carbon footprint,” FCBZ said.

FCBZ said it had also encouraged the use of recycled materials in its business.

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