International Finance

$2 bn programme to make Singapore a green finance hub

Singapore green finance
MAS to establish Green Investments Programme to make the city state a hub of green finance activities

The Monetary Authority of Singapore plans to create a $2 billion green finance programme, the local media reported. The programme is an initiative that will seek to establish the country as a major green financing hub on the global front. 

The programme is called the Green Investments Programme. It will direct funds to asset managers who are focused on strengthening Singapore’s green finance activities and capabilities. These asset managers will invest the funds in public market firms, according to MAS board member and Education Minister Ong Ye Kung. 

The programme’s green finance activities include green-focused funds management, introducing environmental considerations into investment processes and channeling capital toward investments with a strong sustainability portfolio. 

The Monetary Authority of Singapore is planning to allocate $100 billion for International Settlements’ Green Bond Investment Pool as part of the programme.

Ye Kung told the local media that, “We can spur investments in renewables technology, in grid infrastructure, in battery storage. We also need investments in green buildings, efficient cooling and industrial systems, to optimise energy consumption. In time, maybe even bring about investments in carbon sequestration.”

Besides investments, Singapore requires a range of green financing instruments such as bonds and loans. To date, green bonds worth more than $6 billion have been issued in Singapore.

Singapore’s real estate developers such as CapitaLand and City Developments have secured green loans from banks to build environment-friendly projects. These projects comprise solar panels and energy efficient equipment. 

Firms will have to incur costs to develop sustainability frameworks and seek external reviews in order to access green loans. Currently, green lending is a niche market in Asia that is set to become mainstream. 

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