CBI to Implement Environmental and Social Best Practices

Tuesday, 16 May 2023

With the aim of understanding the Panamanian banking sector’s vision regarding its role in managing and adopting Environmental, Social, and Governance (ESG) criteria, including climate and social risks, the Superintendency of Banks of Panama (SBP) hosted the first Participatory Workshop with banks.

This workshop will ensure that banks comprehend and implement international environmental and social best practices and standards, drawing inspiration from the International Finance Corporation’s (ICF) Performance Standards, the United Nations Guiding Principles on Business and Human Rights, and others.

This initiative is part of an agreement signed by the SBP with the International Finance Corporation (IFC), a member of the World Bank Group, the Netherlands Development Bank (FMO), the Norwegian Investment Fund for Developing Countries (Norfund), and the Central American Council of Bank, Insurance, and Other Financial Institutions Superintendents (CCSBSO).

The results of this agreement will help maintain a competitive International Financial Center (IFC) in Panama and create a roadmap aligned with Panama’s priorities and strategic objectives. This will enable Panama to adopt and implement international standards and regulations related to environmental and social risk management.

The first phase of the project includes incorporating definitions that will assist banks in identifying economic activities and assets that could qualify as “green.” This will facilitate the measurement of national climate goals and promote projects contributing to environmental sustainability in accordance with international standards.

To achieve the workshop’s objectives, three sections were developed using participatory techniques, including a Master Presentation, Working Groups, and a Plenary Discussion.

The workshop was attended by 36 banks in Panama, the consulting team from the Honduran-based company Tecnología y Desarrollo Ambiental (TECDEA), Ligia de Doens, representing the Ministry of Environment of Panama (MiAmbiente), and the technical team of the SBP. This workshop represents a significant step towards building a more resilient banking system in Panama, better equipped to address climate-related threats.

Taller participativo