Today marks the 10th anniversary of the UN Guiding Principles on Business and Human Rights, the framework for managing the impact of business on fundamental rights. Much has happened since Professor John Ruggie developed these principles.
BBVA joins the European Clean Hydrogen Alliance, which aims to promote the extension and development of the use of green hydrogen for a carbon-neutral Europe by 2050. BBVA is the only Spanish bank in this alliance promoted by the European Commission.
In an especially hard year for the world of entrepreneurship, BBVA continued supporting entrepreneurs who create a positive social impact. The bank devoted €7.7 million euros (5 percent of the total investment in social programs) to entrepreneurship initiatives, benefitting 2.61 million entrepreneurs in 2020.
In 2020, BBVA launched its ‘COVID-19 Social Response Plan’ with €35.7 million to help society at large. The funds were primarily used to purchase medical equipment to support public health systems. In addition, the bank collaborated with a variety of different organizations to support vulnerable groups, and promoted research on the disease and its side effects. More than 3.5 million people directly benefited from these initiatives, rolled out on top of another batch of measures implemented to support clients and customers, including payment deferrals and government backed loans.
The Collective Commitment to Climate Action (CCCA), the most ambitious global banking sector initiative supporting the transition to a net zero economy by 2050 is celebrating its first anniversary. And to commemorate the occasion it has published its first follow-up report.
As part of its commitment to sustainability, BBVA has become the first institution in Argentina to launch recycled plastic cards, 85.5 percent made of PVC (polyvinyl chloride), produced from recycled plastic.
BBVA has ranked first among European banks in the Dow Jones Sustainability Index (DJSI), the market’s leading benchmark index, which measures the economic, environmental and social performance of the world’s largest companies by market cap. The BBVA Group also took third place in the world ranking. The announcement was made on Friday, at the closing of the stock market in New York.
The BBVA Chairman kicked off MoneyFest, this year’s virtual edition of Money2020. In an interview with Spriha Srivastava, Executive Editor overseeing the London Newsroom of Business Insider, he shared his insights into the trends that the pandemic has accelerated, such as digitization and sustainability. Carlos Torres Vila considers that this crisis can be an “opportunity to reset our world.” In this sense, he noted that the “infusion of public funds must contribute to achieve a more digital, sustainable and inclusive society.”
Both organizations have announced a global collaboration agreement to promote equality among girls and young people with a focus on female role-models. “We are convinced that we can curb the impact of gender stereotypes in a simple and effective way, by teaching girls about successful women that can help them become aware of all the opportunities within their reach”, said BBVA global head of Talent and Culture Carlos Casas.
BBVA has launched a new sustainability training program for the Group’s more than 125,000 employees around the world. It is the first major bank in the world to give mandatory sustainability training to all employees. The new training modules will be available from September 28, coinciding with the fifth anniversary of the United Nations Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs).
On September 25, 2015, at the United Nations headquarters in New York, representatives from 193 countries approved the Agenda 2030. Pivotal to the agenda, the UN defined 17 Sustainable Development Goals and 169 targets – which were announced during the signing ceremony – that address a broad range of issues, from extreme poverty to climate change, and promote both education quality and gender equality, peace or responsible consumption. To commemorate the occasion, BBVA lit up in blue (in homage to the United Nations) its flagship La Vela building in its corporate headquarters in Madrid.
More than a third of the global banking industry has signed the Principles for Responsible Banking, which this month celebrates its one-year anniversary. This milestone demonstrates the sector’s commitment to sustainability and aligning its business activity to the promises made in the Paris Agreement and the UN’s Sustainable Development Goals.
Today, international banks BBVA, BNP Paribas, ING, Société Générale and Standard Chartered (also known as ‘the Katowice Banks’) published a report on the application of the PACTA methodology, designed to steer their credit portfolios towards the objective of the Paris Climate Agreement. This report aims at helping banking peers to quickly understand and apply this methodology and thus publish comparable results.
The bank — which has committed to securing €100 billion in sustainable financing between 2018 and 2025 as part of its contribution in the fight against climate change — reached 40 percent of its sustainable financing target in June 2020. This figure includes transactions in green and social financing (62 percent of the total), social entrepreneurism and financial inclusion (13 percent), sustainable infrastructure and agribusiness (11 percent), and other sustainable sources (14 percent).
BBVA reached €50.2 billion in sustainable financing at the end of December 2020. This means it has achieved half of its sustainable financing objective foreseen for the 2018-2025 period (€100 billion), one year ahead of schedule. The growth rate in the financing of this type of BBVA sustainable operation is 33 percent more than planned.
Within the framework of its Global Eco-efficiency Plan 2016-2020, BBVA recently signed an agreement in Argentina to buy electricity from wind farms, a clean source of electricity that uses wind turbines to transform wind energy into electric power.
BBVA keeps making strides in its sustainability commitment. The bank, in coordination with Caixabank, has signed the first ever sustainable loan with a pharmaceutical company in Spain. The scheme is divided into three tranches: a long-term loan, a revolving line and a credit line for acquisitions, subject to a six-year maturity term.
Many institutions and world players have spearheaded initiatives that are pursuing a common goal: to emerge from the coronavirus crisis with a sustainable and green recovery. Manifestos, letters, commitments, institutional statements, and calls to action have proliferated as the impacts of the crisis have worsened. Many of these initiatives are supported by the European Union; its leaders have approved a historic agreement to address the deep recession caused by COVID-19. It’s the era of green partnerships, and BBVA is an active participant.
BBVA and Acerinox make history by closing the first sustainable transaction in the steel industry in Spain. The deal, a bilateral loan totaling €80 million with a maturity of five years, is intended to partially finance the Acerinox acquisition of VDM Metals.
Growing interest in sustainability across all segments of society has led to innovations in sustainable finance offerings, specifically in the world of corporate financing. Issuances of bonds linked to sustainability criteria are among the latest market developments. Analysts at BBVA Global Markets Research explain the basics and share with us their view of the product.
The project was created with the aim of promoting the work of farmers, ranchers, fishermen and wineries across Spain through easy and delicious recipes. Every month, the Roca brothers will select the best ingredients in season and come up with a proposal of how to cook them. Subscribers will receive a box of products in their kitchen, along with a recipe, the stories of the farmers behind the selected products and healthy advice to make the most of each ingredient. This content will be available to anyone on the ‘Sustainable gastronomy’ platform.
BBVA’s Turkish franchise has set the goal of reducing its carbon dioxide (CO2) emissions by 29 percent by 2025 and 71 percent by 2035. The announcement comes as part of the bank joining the Carbon Disclosure Project’s (CDP) Science-Based Targets (SBT), the most important environmental data platform in the world.
BBVA has added a new feature to its financial aggregator One View. Using data analytics, it allows companies to find out the amount of greenhouse gases they emit into the atmosphere with their daily activities. At a time when SMEs and companies’ main concern is how to face the gradual lifting of lockdown restrictions during the health crisis, finding out their carbon footprint is the first step toward taking action that helps them to reduce their energy costs while having a positive impact on the planet. With this information, they can also explore new, more sustainable lines of business that will facilitate their recovery in a new context.
Ebru Dildar Edin, Vice President of Garanti BBVA, participated in a talk organized by Turkey’s Business Council for Sustainable Development (SKD Türkiye) to discuss the social challenges following the coronavirus pandemic.
The European Commission has published its taxonomy for sustainable finance, a classification instrument to help financial players and companies determine which activities qualify as sustainable. Investments in projects and activities that pursue the European Union’s environmental goals contribute to the transition towards a low carbon economy.
True to its commitment to customers and clients, shareholders and employees and in compliance with its fiscal transparency pledge, BBVA has released its Total Tax Contribution report, as it voluntarily does every year since 2011. BBVA’s fiscal strategy is aligned with the OECD/G20 Base Erosion and Profit Shifting (BEPS) Project and the UN Sustainable Development Goals and the protection of Human Rights.
If there is one thing that characterizes women’s fight for equality, it’s that it’s a global, intergenerational cause. It knows no borders, beliefs, age or race. As conduits of wealth in societies, companies play a fundamental role in the pursuit of equality and in the implementation of policies and measures that guarantee the same rights for men and women.
In 1975, Spain abolished the legal authorization that all married women needed in order to be able to work, travel abroad, or own property. Six years prior, Banco de Bilbao had made history by launching a campaign targeting women. Using the slogan “A bank that’s concerned about us women?” the bank took steps to provide women with financial and business advisory services as well as helping them take control of certain banking transactions, without requiring the consent of a legal guardian.
BBVA is the first financial institution in Spain to distribute cards made of recycled plastic. This launch is part of the bank’s commitment to the fight against climate, and adopt initiatives that contribute to the Sustainable Development Goals. The new cards, which are currently in the early stages of production, will begin circulating in the month of May. They will initially be available for those holding BBVA accounts for young people (Cuenta Joven BBVA).
UN Sustainable Development Goal (SDG) 12 sets out the need to foster sustainable and environmentally-responsible consumption and production patterns. Within the scope of this goal, one of the key strategies that countries need to embrace is the so-called “three Rs” approach: Reduce, Reuse and Recycle, to ensure that waste generation and management is as sustainable as possible.