Resident Coordinator's Remarks at the Sustainable Financing Meeting with GCNT
17 August 2022
[as prepared for delivery]
Good afternoon, everyone and thank you all for joining us this afternoon.
It is a pleasure to welcome you to today’s meeting on Sustainable Financing, which brings together the Securities and Exchanges Commission (SEC), investors, bankers, the private sector along with the UN, for an informal dialogue on opportunities and challenges to unlock sustainable financing premised on ESG principles in the context of Thailand.
All of you around are champions leading on sustainability and we recognize that sustainability can only happen with the cooperation of all of us as partners.
Let me begin by thanking Khun Ruenvadee for the leadership and foresight that you bring to bear in establishing the sustainable investment eco-system for the private sector, banks, and investors, to accelerate the green transition.
The investors represented by Khun Chavinda, who chairs the Association of Investment Management Companies (AIMC), and Dr Man, Deputy Secretary-General of the Government Pension Fund (GPF), thank you for being forward leaning in your support to sustainable investment.
From the banks, we have Mr. Gamba, CEO of HSBC, Dr Adit Senior Executive Vice President of KASIKORNBANK, and Khun Nikorn, Vice President of SCB, who is representing the Thai Bankers’ Association. Thank you for your leadership in championing sustainability among the banks.
I also want to recognize the leadership that we are seeing from the private sector, and in particular the Global Compact Network Thailand (GCNT), which has provided a valuable platform to engage comprehensively with the domestic private sector, including SMEs that make up so much of the value chain.
Khun Yongyut, Managing Director of Thai Union, Dr Mao and Khun Thanya will speak more to this.
We also have the honor of having Preeti Sinha, the Executive Secretary of UN Capital Development Fund (UNCDF) joining us today. Preeti many thanks for creating the time during your very short visit to Thailand to share your perspective on innovative financing in support of sustainability in an UMIC context.
I also recognize my UN colleagues around the room as well as those joining online.
Let me now, briefly set out the background to today’s dialogue.
The UN and the GCNT in Thailand are working together to accelerate the transition to a net-zero carbon economy.
Most Global Compact members have committed to achieving carbon neutrality by 2050. Starting last year, the private sector has reduced carbon emissions by 7 million tons annually, amounting to 2 per cent of the country’s GHGs.
The private sector is also leveraging green, social and sustainability bonds and have mobilized over $5 billion in the past five years to invest in green economic transformation.
Last September at the Sustainable Thailand Forum, co-hosted in partnership with the Securities and Exchange Commission, GPF, and the UN under the leadership of the Finance Minister, 43 financial institutions, including asset management companies and banks with total assets of $1.3 trillion committed to action on the SDGs and climate.
In addition to the convening role, the UN brings technical expertise in areas such as carbon markets, risk-financing strategies with a focus on inclusive insurance, and SDG investor maps to identify investment priorities through local insights.
This is being led by agencies such as UNEP, UNDP, and UNIDO, bringing integrated policy advice through the INFF.
As we work towards a more sustainable and inclusive future, we know that sustainable financing and private sector leadership are essential.
Before I open up the floor, please let me share some lessons that I am continuing to learn in our engagement with all of you:
First, champions are key. Trailblazing investments in green projects have knock-on effects, as other banks and companies get on board. This enables us to connect and bring players in the financial markets together to accelerate sustainable financing.
Second, with the private sector, once best available clean technology is introduced, scaling up of these sustainable solutions happens rapidly and at their own initiative.
And third, it is essential that the agenda of sustainable finance is owned and led locally by the public, private and finance sectors in country.
By leveraging UN’s convening power, we can help accelerate that pace and the effectiveness of our joint work in the spirit of partnership.
The UN looks forward to scaling up our collaboration with the private sector, investors and banks in support of the journey on sustainable financing.