OCBC becomes first Southeast Asian bank to adopt Poseidon Principles

The framework aims to accelerate the decarbonisation of the shipping sector.

OCBC Bank has joined the wave of financial institutions which has adopted the Poseidon Principles, becoming the first bank to do so in Southeast Asia.

Launched in June 2019, the Poseidon Principles provides a “baseline to quantitatively measure the carbon footprint of their shipping customers and disclose whether their lending portfolios are tracking the adopted climate goals by the International Maritime Organisation (IMO).”

Based on IMO data, maritime transport emits around 940 million tonnes of carbon annually and is responsible for about 2.5% of global greenhouse gases.

Currently, 29 financial intuitions have committed to the framework in a bid to support the shipping industry’s carbon emission reduction goal of at least 50% by 2050 by determining, assessing, and managing the climate alignment of their ship finance portfolio.

The bank loan portfolio to global shipping of all 29 institutions — approximately $258.16b (USD 189b) — comprises nearly 50% of the global ship finance.

As of end-September 2021, OCBC Bank’s ship finance portfolio contributes to about 2% of its total loans book.

Elaine Lam, head of Global Corporate Banking of OCBC Bank, said by adopting Poseidon Principles, the bank will be able to support their customers and stakeholders “across the maritime eco-system more effectively on their decarbonisation journey.”

Other measures the bank has taken concerning the decarbonisation of the shipping sector include its Responsible Financing framework (2017) and the publication of its first Task-Force on Climate-related Financial Disclosures report (2020).

(1 SGD = 0.73 USD)

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