Ecobank Transnational Incorporated (ETI), the parent company of the Ecobank Group, has announced its adoption of the Equator Principles, the industry standard for financial institutions active in project finance. Ecobank will apply the principles to project finance activities in all relevant sectors and across all of the 30 countries in Middle Africa in which it operates.
The Equator Principles are a credit risk management framework for determining, assessing and managing environmental and social risk in project finance. The principles are adopted voluntarily by financial institutions and are applied where total project capital costs exceed US$10 million.
By adopting the Equator Principles, Ecobank commits not to provide loans to projects where the borrower cannot or will not comply with the environmental and social standards set out in the Equator Principles’ policies and procedures.
Arnold Ekpe, Group CEO of Ecobank, said: “This initiative reaffirms our commitment to the sustainable financial and economic development of Africa and demonstrates how a Pan-African institution like Ecobank can take bold action to protect the environment and set socially responsible standards.
Indeed, our aim is to go beyond these principles in addressing the most critical challenges of our time – the environment, poverty and social cohesion. At Ecobank, we believe we can make a difference across the African continent by championing sustainable banking.”
It should be noted that the Equator Principles were launched in 2003 and are based on the Policy and Performance Standards and on the Environmental Health and Safety Guidelines set down by the International Finance Corporation (IFC), and were initially adopted by ten leading global financial institutions.
The Ecobank Group is a full-service Pan-African banking institution providing wholesale, retail, investment and transactional banking services to governments, financial institutions, multinationals, SMEs and individuals. The Group currently operates in 30 African countries, namely: Benin, Burkina Faso, Burundi, Cameroon, Cape Verde, Central African Republic, Chad, Congo (Brazzaville), Congo (Democratic Republic).
Others are Côte d’Ivoire, Gabon, Gambia, Ghana, Guinea, Guinea-Bissau, Kenya, Liberia, Malawi, Mali, Niger, Nigeria, Rwanda, Sao Tome and Principe, Senegal, Sierra Leone, Tanzania, Togo, Uganda, Zambia and Zimbabwe. The group also has an affiliate in Paris and representative offices in Dubai, Johannesburg, London and Luanda.