Sustainability-linked bonds – new Q&As and other resources published by the Green & Social Bond Principles
17 February 2021 The Executive Committee of the Green and Social Bond Principles has published new Q&As for sustainability-linked bonds (SLBs). These are designed to promote understanding of this important new financial instrument and its place in an issuer’s overall sustainability strategy, as well as encourage development in this rapidly evolving new market. The Q&As support the Sustainability-Linked Bond Principles published by the Green & Social Bond Principles in June 2020 and now available in 21 languages. This publication was made possible thanks to the efforts of the members of the SLB working group.
The Guidelines for External Reviews have also been updated to include sustainability-linked bonds. The new provisions in the Guidelines are the result of a collaboration between the SLB working group and the external reviewers consulted prior to the publication of this update who have also voluntarily confirmed their alignment with these recommendations.
Finally, to complete the range of resources designed to enable the SLB market’s growth and promote its transparency, two forms are now available online, the Market Information Template and External Review Form. These forms, based on the same model as those available for green, social and sustainability bonds, allow on the one hand the issuer to confirm that its bond is aligned with the SLBP and on the other hand, the external reviewer to confirm the scope of its review. It should be highlighted that the Market Information Template contains a section allowing the issuer to evidence the compliance of its SLB with the eligibility requirements of the European Central Bank for its asset purchases and collateral programmes.
SLB issuers and reviewers are invited to complete the forms which will be made publicly available on the ICMA Sustainable Bonds Database which now tracks SLB issuances.