Providing sustainable finance

The most significant contribution we can make to tackling climate change is financing the transition to net zero.

Finance is key to building a sustainable future.

We are a leading sustainable finance provider and have received widespread recognition for the support we provide to clients, including being named the World’s Best Sustainable Bank by Euromoney magazine in 2019 and 2020.

We currently define sustainable finance as:

  • Any form of financial service that integrates environmental, social and governance (ESG) criteria into business or investment decisions
  • Financing and investment activities that support the UN Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs), in particular taking action to combat climate change

We are currently reviewing these definitions and will update them shortly.

A once-in-a-lifetime opportunity (duration 3:12) HSBC’s Luis Guimaraes explains why banks are embracing sustainable finance

Supporting our customers to thrive through transition

At the heart of our climate ambition is a goal to align financed emissions from our portfolio of customers to the Paris Agreement goal of net zero by 2050 or sooner.

We are intensifying the support we provide to help our portfolio of customers thrive in the low-carbon transition and build a more sustainable future. We aim to:

  • Work with them on their journey to lower carbon emissions, bringing together our dedicated ESG Solutions team, our award-winning products, and experts across the bank to develop tailored solutions for them
  • Prioritise financing and investment that supports our customers in all sectors to transition to lower carbon emissions. Our ambition is to provide between USD750 billion and USD1 trillion of financing and investment for this purpose over the next 10 years
  • Increase our portfolio of transition finance solutions to help enable even the most heavy-emitting sectors to progressively decarbonise, while helping to ensure a just and stable transition to maintain economic stability
  • Apply a climate lens to our financing decisions, taking into account the unique conditions for our clients across developed and developing economies

The clients we support to achieve their sustainability goals range from government bodies and multinational companies to investors and savers.

Find support on sustainable finance from HSBC

To find out more information about the support HSBC can provide you, please use the tool below.

Building on our achievements

HSBC has been at the forefront of developing the sustainable finance market.

We helped establish the principles that govern how ‘green’ money is raised and spent as a member of the International Capital Market Association’s Executive Committee for the Green Bond Principles.

HSBC was a founding member in the Climate Finance Leadership Initiative formed by UN Special Envoy for Climate Action Michael Bloomberg, helping to mobilise our industry to take action on climate.

We’ve also been responsible for a number of ‘firsts’ in this field, from helping companies, governments and institutions issue green, social and sustainable bonds, to attaching ambitious environmental targets to business loans, and setting up a joint venture called HSBC Pollination Climate Asset Management investing in enhancing and protecting the planet.

Find out more about HSBC Pollination Climate Asset Management (opens in new window)

In 2015 we issued our own first green bond, raising EUR500 million to fund projects in the following sectors: cleaner transportation, climate change adaptation, energy efficiency, sustainable land use, waste and water management, renewable energy. Find out more on our green and sustainability bonds page.

In 2017 we made a commitment to provide and facilitate USD100 billion in sustainable finance by 2025. By the end of 2019, we had made USD52.4 billion of progress toward this target. In 2020, we updated our target, and now have an ambition to provide between USD750 billion and USD1 trillion by 2030 to help clients cut carbon.

In 2017, we broke new ground when we launched a USD1 billion bond, raising money to help achieve the UN’s SDGs – the first private company to issue a bond of this type.

A year later, HSBC Amanah Malaysia facilitated the world’s First SDG Sukuk, a bond that complies with Islamic religious law.

And in 2020 we continued to expand the horizons of sustainable finance, including by helping Egypt launch the first sovereign green bond in the Middle East, supporting a German household goods company to issue the world’s first bond to tackle plastic waste, and pioneering bonds earmarked to support COVID-19 relief and recovery efforts.

We also led debate in our industry by publishing a paper on the crucial role that transition finance could play in helping even the most heavy-emitting sectors to progressively decarbonise.

Tractors plough a green field

HSBC named best investment bank for sustainability

The Banker recognises our work on sustainable finance and support for communities.

Supporting sustainable investing

Investors and investment managers are increasingly applying ESG criteria when deciding where to put their money.

HSBC Global Asset Management has increased its range of socially responsible investment funds to meet demand for climate-related investments.

The majority of its work in this area has been recognised with an A+ rating from the Principles of Responsible Investment (PRI).

Visit our Global Asset Management website (opens in new window) to find out more about our approach to responsible investing.

Meeting international standards

We work with investors, governments, non-governmental organisations and other financial institutions to support long-term investment in environmentally sustainable projects.

Managing sustainability risk

We seek to ensure the financial services we provide do not result in an unacceptable impact on people or the environment. HSBC is a signatory to the Equator Principles and we work with business customers to help them recognise and measure sustainability risk, and improve their sustainability practices.

Our Centre of Sustainable Finance

HSBC’s Centre of Sustainable Finance (opens in new window) leads and shapes the debate around sustainable finance and investment. The centre publishes research reports covering key themes such as assessing climate change risk.

Climate solutions and innovation

The transition to a net zero economy requires radically new solutions. We are pioneering new financing models for nature-based solutions, and providing support for promising and innovative clean technologies.

Read more

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