KfW IPEX-Bank bases the due diligence analysis of the projects it finances on internationally recognised environmental and social standards.
It signed up to the Equator Principles on 1 March 2008. More than 100 financial institutions around the world have meanwhile adopted the standards enshrined by the Principles relating to the assessment of environmental and social impacts.
The Equator Principles apply worldwide to:
- Project finance
- Project-related corporate finance
- Bridge loans for subsequent project finance
- Project-related refinance and project-related acquisition finance
- The provision of advice on project finance and project-related corporate finance
They categorise environmental and social impacts as high, moderate or low, based on the environmental and social standards of the International Finance Corporation (IFC), a member of the World Bank Group. These environmental and social standards are set out in the IFC's so-called “Performance Standards”, as well as in the Environmental, Health, and Safety (EHS) Guidelines of the World Bank Group. The standards are used to assess the consequences of using particular technologies (such as offshore wind farms, overland rail transport).
Applying the Equator Principles at KfW IPEX-Bank
KfW IPEX-Bank bases its financing activities on the Equator Principles and also conducts its business according to its own which exceeds the requirements of the Equator Principles by categorising all financing activities and not just those products described above.
The history and impact of the Equator Principles
The Equator Principles (EP) were created in 2003. They have been revised three times since then, and are valid in their current form of EP VI since November 2019. They can be viewed on the website of the association of banks that have adopted the Equator Principles (EP Association). The Equator Principles provide guidance to both borrowers and lenders on how to assess projects and how improvement measures can be incorporated into project and loan agreements. Every member of the EP Association makes use of the framework offered by the Equator Principles, and incorporates the Principles into their own policies.