The Alliance for Green Commercial Banks Organises the “Practitioner Talk: BUILDING a Green Future”

| | | East Asia & Pacific

The Alliance for Green Commercial Banks (the Alliance), co-launched by the Hong Kong Monetary Authority (HKMA) and International Finance Corporation (IFC), a member of the World Bank Group, hosted the roundtable “Practitioner Talk: BUILDING a Green Future”, virtually today (21 July). This roundtable attracted participants globally from Asia Pacific, the Middle East, Europe, and the Americas.

Following the Alliance’s roundtable on green building “CEO Talk: BUILDING a Green Future” on 14 July, the second green building roundtable “Practitioner Talk: BUILDING a Green Future” invited leaders and experts in green building, green finance and policy-making to share their insights on the development in green building in Hong Kong and Asia.

The roundtable commenced with opening remarks from Mr Vivek Pathak, Global Head and Director of Climate Business, IFC; and a keynote address by Mr KS Wong, Secretary for the Environment.

The panel discussion was moderated by Mr Darryl Chan, Executive Director (External) of the HKMA. The roundtable also featured the following speakers:

  • Mr Cheung Hau-wai, Chairman, Hong Kong Green Building Council;
  • Mr George Hongchoy, Executive Director and Chief Executive Officer, Link Asset Management Limited; and
  • Mr Prashant Kapoor, Chief Industry Specialist, Climate Business Group, IFC.

During this session, speakers discussed the opportunities and challenges in green building development, benefits that green building certification systems bring about, and the associated financing and investment opportunities in Hong Kong and Asia.

“There is no green future without green building,” said Mr KS Wong. “Over the past decade, the Government has allocated over HK$47 billion to implement various green building, energy saving and renewable energy measures, promote electric vehicles and vessels, and introduce innovative waste-to-energy and waste-to-resources facilities to help reduce waste and carbon emissions. The Chief Executive announced in last year’s Policy Address that Hong Kong would strive to achieve carbon neutrality before 2050. To achieve carbon neutrality requires collaborative efforts across the sectors. Since 2016, the Environment Bureau has been promoting the 4T Partnership, with emphases on "4Ts", i.e. "Target", "Timeline", "Transparency", and "Togetherness", when working jointly with stakeholders. We are looking forward to partnering with the finance and building sectors to work together towards carbon neutrality.”

“Green buildings represent one of the biggest investment opportunities of the next decade—$24.7 trillion across emerging market cities by around 2030”, said Mr Vivek Pathak. “The green buildings market can also be shaped by progressive developers and owners, who demonstrate a proof of concept and pave the way for others to follow. Governments can also shape the green buildings market by setting rules and creating incentives through policies, regulations, and monitoring compliance.”

“Green buildings present tremendous investment opportunities and creates value for financial institution’s portfolio,” said Mr Darryl Chan. “Furthermore, the investment, development and management of green buildings allow industry players to tap into new sources of funding through green finance.”

To facilitate the exchange of ideas and discussions, the Alliance will continue to host a series of roundtables on topics related to green finance throughout the year, sharing best practices in green banking in Asia and globally.

Hong Kong Monetary Authority
21 July 2021