Sri Lanka: Pan Asia Bank, Receives Rs. 1.5 bn Green Bond from Symbiotics
Sri Lanka, June, 16 2020 -
Pan Asia Bank has become the recipient of an USD 7.75 million (approximately 1.5 billion rupees) Green Bond launched by the Switzerland-based Symbiotics, the leading market access platform for impact investing.
Pan Asia Bank thus becomes the first Sri Lankan bank to receive green bond issuance.
The Green Bond proceeds are in the forms of a 4-year, senior unsecured, local currency loan to Pan Asia Bank, and the main investor is Skandinaviska Enskilda Bank (SEB), the leading Nordic banking group.
The bond is the first Green Bond issued via Symbiotics’ sponsored bond issuance platform (Micro, Small & Medium Enterprises Bonds S.A.) since it’s Sustainability, Social and Green Bond Framework was certified in December 2019 by DNV GL.
Commenting on this initiative, the Director/CEO of Pan Asia Bank, Nimal Tillekeratne said, “being awarded this bond at such a turbulent time in the global economy, is a testament to the trust and confidence Symbiotics and SEB have placed in Pan Asia Bank and its commitment to green financing. This initiative also is an indicator of the confidence the global players have in the bright economic prospects of Sri Lanka.”
“With these funds, we will focus our attention on promoting indigenous crops that will also support the Sri Lankan government’s initiatives to become self-sufficient through strengthening sustainable agricultural practices.”
Symbiotics, commenting on the arrangement with Pan Asia Bank said: “This Green Bond is a confirmation of Symbiotics’ strategy to make Sustainability, Social and Green Bonds accessible for smaller issuances in emerging and frontier markets. The issuance of this Green bond is fully aligned to our mission to foster sustainable development in emerging and frontier economies and we are excited to nurture and grow this segment of the MSME market even further.”
Committed to adding value to its vast SME base of customers, Pan Asia Bank will be utilizing these funds to support and promote local agriculture with special emphasis on encouraging use of indigenous seeds, sustainable agriculture, renewable energy and energy efficiency projects. Sri Lanka’s agricultural sector is in urgent need of adoption of sustainable practices and the Bank is at the forefront of green financing in the country, having won the prestigious Global Climate Partnership Award trophy in 2019 for its green lending efforts.
Symbiotics is the leading market access platform for impact investing, dedicated to financing micro- small and medium enterprises and low- and middle-income households in emerging and frontier markets.