Greening the Financial System: From Momentum to Transformation


Momentum is building to align the financial system to support sustainable development and economic growth. In the last six months, a range of market and policy actions have been taken that support the growth of green finance such as:

  • The green bond market is booming, fueled by investor demand, new regulations and strategic investment needs, as well as China’s entry into the market.
  • National leadership continues to be a driving force, e.g. China adopting a ground-breaking plan to green its financial system; EU committing to a strategic review of sustainable finance.
  • UN Environment has identified over 200 innovative policy and regulatory measures that have been taken across 60 countries to link finance and sustainability.
  • G20 Leaders issued the first communiqué that includes green finance, and the Financial Stability Board is exploring climate risks across the financial system.
  • Sustainability is becoming a competitiveness factor for some of the world’s financial centers, including Hong Kong, Nairobi, London, and Paris.


Momentum is to be applauded, but is not enough to deliver financing to meet the climate commitments under the Paris Agreement, which can also lead to additional economic growth. Further policy and market reform is necessary to bring green finance into the mainstream of the financial infrastructure.
On Friday, October 7, 2016, organizations from around the globe met in Washington, DC before the IMF and World Bank annual meetings to discuss ways to meet this transformational challenge.


Green Finance - Ronald Reagan Building and International Trade Center Rotunda

Greening the Financial System: From Momentum to Transformation — Ronald Reagan Building and International Trade Center Rotunda 

Simon Zadek, Co-Director, UNEP Inquiry

Ludger Schuknecht, Chief Economist and Head of Directorate General Fiscal Policy and International Financial and Monetary Policy, German Ministry of Finance

Douglas Flint, Chairman, HSBC

Patrick Njoroge, Governor, Central Bank of Kenya

Deborah Lehr, Senior Advisor, Paulson Institute, Basilinna

Kenneth E. Bentsen, Jr., President and CEO, SIFMA

Luis Alberto Moreno, President, Inter-American Development Bank

Jonathan Taylor, Vice-President, responsible for Environment and Climate Action, European Investment Bank

Yi Gang, Deputy Governor, People’s Bank of China 

Amina Mohamed, Minister of Environment, Government of Nigeria

Tim Adams, President and CEO, Institute of International Finance (IIF)

Read more about Green Finance at

David Strongin is Executive Director, GFMA