On 1 May 2014, Mizuho Bank will become the first Asian bank to chair the Equator Principles Association originally adopted by ten US and European financial institutions in June 2003. Will this mobilize more Asian financial intuitions to adopt EPs? - Shortlink: http://wp.me/p27qSt-Di
The "Equator Principles” or EPs are a set of guidelines based on the IFC Performance Standards (and its predecessors) to help banks better manage social and environmental issues related to the financing of development projects. The 10 founding banks were ABN AMRO, Barclays, Citigroup, Crédit Lyonnais, Credit Suisse First Boston, HVB Group, Rabobank Group, The Royal Bank of Scotland, WestLB, and Westpac, which, at the time, represented approximately 30% of the project loan syndication market globally.
Why have Asian financial institution not adopted the EPs in greater numbers? Will the leadership of Mizuho Bank be able to mobilize them? Or will they not see much value in adopting the Equator Principles, given more reliance on relationship banking instead of syndication, or view their application as too cumbersome?
You may also be interested in some previous blog posts about the EPs:
About the author: Mehrdad Nazari (MSc, MBA) is a Senior ESIA & Sustainability Advisor, and Director of Prizma. He has over 20 years of professional experience and has been involved in engaging and supervising Independent Engineers while serving at the European Bank for Reconstructions and Development, a multilateral financial institution, supported Independent Engineers in conducting project reviews, responded to Independent Engineer’s reviewing his ESIA contributions, and has also seen how Equator Principles and IFC Performance Standards are used as benchmarks in the context of international arbitration. You can access Mehrdad’s LinkedIn profile here.