As a signatory since 2006, we have fully integrated compliance with the Equator Principles into our policies and processes. Implementation is a joint responsibility of our relationship managers, credit officers and specialist Equator Principles resources, with advice from qualified independent consultants as required. We apply the Equator Principles globally across industry sectors to our project finance advisory services, project finance, project-related corporate loans, project-related refinancing and acquisition finance, and bridge loans. We will not provide finance to projects where the customer will not, or is unable to, comply with the Equator Principles.
About the Equator Principles
The Equator Principles (EP) is a risk management framework for determining, assessing and managing social and environmental risks in major projects such as mines, windfarms and pipelines. The EP provides a minimum standard for due diligence and monitoring to support responsible decision-making across the following financial products: advisory services, project finance, project-related corporate loans, project-related refinancing and acquisition finance, and project-related bridge loans.
We regard the EP as complementary to our sensitive sector requirements and our Social and Environmental Risk Policy.
What the Equator Principles require
Projects assessed as being within the scope are evaluated against the Equator Principles, including against comprehensive international performance standards (“IFC performance standards”) on issues such as labour and working conditions, natural resource management, pollution prevention, impacts on Indigenous people, community health and safety and cross-cutting themes such as gender and human rights.
Projects with a high social or environmental impact are required to consult with local communities about concerns those communities may have. Following consultation they must then prepare a management and monitoring plan describing the actions needed to adequately mitigate the social and environmental risks of the project.
We are required under the Equator Principles to ensure these steps are carried out in collaboration with our customers.
The Principles do not prescribe for a bank what projects it should be involved in and those it should avoid, but rather ensure the bank makes an informed decision, by requiring a thorough analysis of potential social and environmental impacts.
We provide further details on our application of the Equator Principles in our ESG reporting.