Innovations in sustainability

Innovating in sustainability was a priority in 2011. We showed our commitment through a number of initiatives:

Financing private sector climate change initiatives by organizing a Boosting Investments in Sustainable Forestry and Forest Carbon Conference in Amsterdam. Committed a record amount of €287.7 million to sustainable energy projects and took the lead joint structuring role in KivuWatt and Addax - two groundbreaking projects that have been recognized internationally with Project Finance International awards.

Our Financial institutions department held sustainability round table discussions with the central banks, commercial banks and regulators in Bangladesh and Nigeria. In Cambodia we engaged with the microfinance sector on consumer protection. And together with DEG, we organized a round table event focusing on environmental and social issues for African fund managers.

Although FMO currently does not finance any palm oil projects we partnered with the World Wildlife Fund (WWF) and CDC to produce a report on the 'Profitability and Sustainability in Palm Oil Production'. This is one of the first studies of its kind in that it aims to demonstrate the business case for certification at an industry/sector level. This report surveys the financial costs and benefits experienced by growers of palm oil through the implementation of Roundtable for Sustainable Palm Oil (RSPO) certification.

In 2011, we conducted a feasibility study into innovative sustainability approaches in the energy sector.

We also held a round table event on sustainability with representatives of the Indonesian banking sector where we discussed the study on the possible creation of a private sector FIT Fund in Indonesia.

In 2011, FMO worked to demonstrate the 'business case' for sustainability. We assembled case studies from our own portfolio that demonstrate how our clients have successfully integrated sustainability into their production processes, thereby mitigating risks and reaping benefits which are ultimately reflected in stronger financial performance. In 2012, FMO's investment officers will use these business cases in the field, as vivid examples to communicate the added value of ESG to our prospective clients' business activities.