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Ireland’s Year of Sustainable Finance 2019

Year of Sustainable Finance 2019 is launched

• A €500,000 programme of more than 30 domestic and international events to showcase and develop Ireland’s growth as a global centre of excellence in sustainable finance

• Low-carbon economy critical for tackling Climate Change and a government priority

IRELAND is increasingly seen as a centre of excellence in the area of sustainable finance, the huge sums of capital that are required to finance projects that can tackle climate change in Ireland and on a global scale.

That’s according to Financial Services Minister Michael D’Arcy, speaking as he launched Ireland’s inaugural Year of Sustainable Finance – a programme of over 30 events, skills- based and innovation activities to support and showcase Ireland’s leading role as an international sustainable finance centre.
The programme will be overseen by Sustainable Nation Ireland, the non-governmental organisation that promotes Ireland as a major global hub for sustainable finance and responsible investment.

The Government has made Sustainable Finance a key theme in its IFS 2020 Strategy action plan for 2019 and has tasked Sustainable Nation to oversee the ‘The Year ofSustainable Finance 2019’ to further those objectives.

These objectives include the development of a national roadmap to support the continued growth of sustainable finance activities located in Ireland, organising a second Climate Finance Week in November and exploring the development of a sustainable finance innovation programme of activities, including in the area of green fintech.

Speaking at the launch of the Year of Sustainable Business at the Banking and Payments Federation of Ireland offices in Dublin, Sustainable Nation Ireland CEO Stephen Nolan said: “We invite Irish capital market participants of all sizes to join us on the journey towards building a sustainable future and shaping Ireland’s response to the EU Action Plan for Financing Sustainable Growth. Sustainability issues, including climate change, is now a critical agenda item for institutional investors, asset managers, banks and the insurance sector. And it is one that the sector is reacting to, but we need to move faster to fully realise the opportunity hence the Year of Sustainable Finance programme.”

Commenting, Financial Services Minister Michael D’Arcy, said: “Under development since 2012, Ireland is rightly seen as a centre of excellence in the area of sustainable finance. In all respects, this innovative Year of Sustainable Finance programme of activities is an unmissable opportunity to showcase Ireland’s emerging leadership in this space. And for those that have yet to embrace this opportunity, raise awareness of the issues and chart a path forward to up-skill Irish located market-based participants in this area. As part of this year’s European Financial Forum agenda I am delighted to launch the Year of Sustainable Finance 2019.”

The Year of Sustainable Finance is included in the IFS 2020 Strategy for 2019. The year will consist of various initiatives, talent development programmes, consultations and events that help to inform and develop policy around sustainable finance including new research that will help Ireland improve how it funds, manages and grows responsible investment, both at home and abroad.

That investment will in turn help Ireland and the rest of the world meet our Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) and Paris Climate Accord commitments.
The Year of Sustainable Finance 2019 will promote Ireland as a leader in Sustainable Finance, aim to improve the country’s ranking on various green finance indices and promote the International Financial Services sector internationally.

The highlights of the Year of Sustainable Finance will include:

• Showcasing Ireland’s sustainable finance activities locally and nationally.
• Roll out of a capital markets sustainable finance skills programme.
• Supporting international climate finance initiatives including the United Nation’s
Financial Centres for Sustainability (FC4S) European node programme.
• The publication by Sustainable Investment Forum (SIF) Ireland of its second annual
Responsible Investment State of Play Ireland Report.
• The co-hosting by Ireland of the European Climate Finance Innovation Summit in
May with the World Bank.
• The country’s second Climate Finance Week with a host of programmes and events
to promote Sustainable Finance.
• Publication of a sectoral analysis charting the growing demands of this new sector in
financial services.

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