Hellenic Bank has set up a dedicated unit to deal with ‘green economy’ issues, as well as implementing ESG principles of environmental and social responsibility and implementing sound governance practices.
The bank, which has introduced energy-saving initiatives in its branches and supports eco-awareness in schools, is now turning to its client base, offering solutions that will help improve the ecological footprint and impact on the economy.
It said, in an announcement, that “as one of the leading financial institutions in the country, Hellenic Bank aspires to become the biggest ambassador of a speedy transformation to the Green Economy, one of the five key pillars of the national plan for recovery and sustainability.”
The bank said it is committed to “green and social financing of businesses, offering choices and solutions,” as well as incentives to customers to improve their environmental and sustainability targets.
“We are committed to adopting and implementing the United Nations 2030 Agenda for Sustainable Development and working effectively with our stakeholders to accelerate inclusive growth, confront climate change and achieve sustainable development,” said bank Chairman Dr. Evripides Polykarpou.
One of the first measures has been the introduction of eco-friendly material for their Mastercard plastic money that uses 82% less PVC in each card, and joining the Priceless Planet Coalition that includes other banks in the Mastercard network.
As part of this initiative, the bank said it will use products selected from the Mastercard Sustainable Materials Directory.
Two other flagship eco-friendly financing projects include €98 mln in credit facilities provided to the Orites Wind Farm in Paphos that contributed in over 90,000 tonnes of CO2 emissions being avoided and supply of green electricity to over 15,000 households.
Hellenic Bank also provided senior project financing for the bus fleet and other capital costs undertaken by Cyprus Public Transport (CPT), in launching their new public bus transport in Nicosia and Larnaca districts.
The bank said CPT made an investment of €54 mln, mostly financed by Hellenic, with the reduction in CO2 emissions per passenger mile from the use of public buses estimated above 30% in relation to the use of private cars.