Mizuho Bank, Ltd. (MHBK; Yasuhiro Sato, President and CEO) will take on the role of Chair of the Equator Principles Association (EPA) from 1st May. This is the first time an Asian bank has been appointed as the EPA Chair. The EPA is an association of 79 global financial institutions that adopt the Equator Principles (EPs), supporting sound and responsible project development with environmental and social consideration.
The EPs are a risk management framework adopted by EP financial institutions (EPFIs) for determining, assessing and managing environmental and social risk in large-scale infrastructure or industrial projects when providing finance. These are a set of voluntary standards under which EPFIs request certain actions from the borrower to ensure the project is executed in an environmentally and socially sound manner.
First launched by US and European financial institutions in June 2003, the EPs are now a global standard for conducting large-scale development projects, adopted by 79 of the major banks around the world. In October 2003, Mizuho Bank (formerly Mizuho Corporate Bank) became the first Asian bank to adopt the EPs, in order to fulfill its responsibilities as an international bank with global operational presence.
In recent years, large natural resource development and infrastructure projects have been embarked upon in emerging countries including in Asia. On the other hand, the institutional framework to manage environmental and social aspects is still in the process of developing in these regions. MHBK has been leading the EPA’s EP Outreach Working Group in Asia since August 2010, concentrating on communicating with the local governments and banks to expand and deepen their understanding of the EPs.
Helping the institutions build E&S risk management capacity through seminars, hosting of trainees, etc., MHBK’s efforts have been instrumental in having initial member banks from China and India adopt the EPs.
MHBK is firmly committed to play a leadership role among EPFIs as the first Asian Chair to pursue the sustainable economic development of emerging markets in Asia and all around the world by taking advantage of its long experience in executing EP-based project finance.
For further information go to: http://www.mizuhobank.com/index.html