The World Bank Group and Japan’s Government Pension Investment Fund (GPIF) have formalized a partnership that aims to expand markets for sustainable investing.
Under the partnership, the World Bank Group and GPIF will collaborate on initiatives that promote strategies for including environmental, social and governance criteria in investment decisions across different asset classes. Ultimately, the aim is to direct more capital towards sustainable investments.
Investors are increasingly looking for opportunities to have a positive impact, but data and standards for incorporating environmental, social and governance considerations vary across asset classes. For example, the link between investment performance and sustainability considerations is better understood for equity than for fixed income markets.
To address these gaps, as a first step the World Bank Group and GPIF will develop a joint research program that will explore practical solutions for integrating sustainability considerations into fixed income portfolios. Potential areas of research include benchmarks, guidelines, rating methodologies, disclosure frameworks, reporting templates and risk correlation for incorporating environmental, social, and governance considerations into fixed income portfolios, including for sovereigns and sustainable bond markets.
“Together with GPIF, we are embarking on an ambitious initiative to transform the way asset owners and managers see investment opportunities,” World Bank Group President Jim Yong Kim said. “We can’t achieve the Sustainable Development Goals and meet the world’s rising aspirations without a much bigger contribution from the private sector. Our experience has shown that good environmental, social, and governance standards translate into good investments. And there’s never been a better opportunity to do this: there’s more than $40 trillion on the sidelines, where investors are looking for better returns. The GPIF is one of the world leaders in sustainable investing, and together we can help make the global market system work for everyone.”
Hiro Mizuno, GPIF Executive MD and CIO, said: “This is a unique opportunity for GPIF and the World Bank Group to make a valuable contribution towards the Sustainable Development Goals, providing practical solutions to catalyze the development of sustainable fixed income markets. This partnership strongly reflects GPIF’s strategic commitment in advancing the integration of environmental, social and governance considerations in all asset classes of its portfolio.”