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IFC Becomes First Global Development Bank to Sign UN Principles for Responsible Investment


In Washington, D.C.:
Houtan Bassiri

Phone: +1 (202) 458-4662

E-mail:
hbassiri@ifc.org


Washington, D.C., March 23, 2011—IFC, a member of the World Bank Group, announced today that it has become the first multilateral development bank to sign the United Nations Principles for Responsible Investment (UNPRI), extending its efforts to mobilize capital for investments that are environmentally and socially responsible and adhere to high standards of corporate governance.

IFC’s Asset Management Company also signed the principles, a high-level framework that demonstrates the signatories’ commitment to integrate environmental, social, and governance factors into their investment processes. The principles aim to increase awareness of the importance of managing social, environmental and governance risks and to provide support in that process through a network of like-minded institutions.


“Through our Performance Standards, IFC has for many years been setting the benchmark for how to best consider social and environmental risk when making investment decisions,” said Rachel Kyte, IFC Vice President for Business Advisory Services. “Our collaboration with UNPRI will enable IFC’s approach to be shared by investors across a wider range of asset classes and have a larger impact promoting sustainable and responsible investments.”

 
IFC brings to its partnership with UNPRI more than 50 years of experience promoting sustainable and responsible investments in emerging markets. IFC’s Performance Standards form the basis of the Equator Principles, the industry standard for banks to manage environmental and social issues in project financing. IFC Advisory Services also provide advice, problem solving, and training to companies, industries, and governments to promote sustainability.


“We are delighted to have the IFC as a formal signatory to the PRI,” said James Gifford, Executive Director of the Principles for Responsible Investment. “IFC has, for many years, been a leader in responsible investment in emerging markets, and we look forward to working with them to demonstrate to the broader market how responsible investment can deliver strong returns in a way that also supports sustainable business practices and markets.”


As part of their collaboration, IFC and the UNPRI will initially focus on three priorities:

  • Jointly convene events in emerging markets to help raise awareness of the business case for responsible investment.
  • IFC will support UNPRI work on private equity by making its procedure for how to manage environmental and social risks available to other PRI signatories
  • IFC and UNPRI will support investors to link their emerging market investment strategies with the Millennium Development Goals within a fiduciary, market-return context.

About IFC

IFC, a member of the World Bank Group, is the largest global development institution focused on the private sector in developing countries. We create opportunity for people to escape poverty and improve their lives. We do so by providing financing to help businesses employ more people and supply essential services, by mobilizing capital from others, and by delivering advisory services to ensure sustainable development. In a time of global economic uncertainty, our new investments climbed to a record $18 billion in fiscal 2010. For more information, visit
www.ifc.org.

About IFC Asset Management Company

IFC Asset Management Company LLC, a wholly-owned subsidiary of IFC, invests third-party capital, enabling outside investors to benefit from IFC’s expertise in achieving strong equity returns as well as positive development impact in the countries in which it invests. It manages the $3 billion IFC Capitalization Fund and the $1 billion IFC African, Latin American and Caribbean Fund.