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Hana chief stresses sustainable financing in EuropeBy Im Eun-byel
Published : Oct. 9, 2023 - 15:22
Hana Financial Group Chairman Ham Young-joo highlighted the importance of sustainable financing during his meeting with the Dutch ambassador for sustainable development in The Hague, Netherlands, Friday.
The Hana chief met with Ambassador Rene van Hell as part of his visit to Europe to meet with global investors.
According to Hana, Ham and van Hell agreed on the need for "green financing" to transition to a decarbonized economy, in particular cutting down on carbon emissions in asset portfolios. Green financing refers to loans or investments that uphold environmentally-positive values.
“Hana Financial Group has been working on adopting environment, social and governance values in financing through ‘2030 & 60’ and ‘Zero & Zero,’ to contribute to an economy with net-zero emissions,” Ham said, referring to the group’s ESG projects which aim to achieve carbon neutrality.
"I hope both (Korea and the Netherlands) could cooperate with each other in future (and) create mutual profits, such as investing in green economy sectors, or (Korea) could participate in investment programs for developing countries led by the Netherlands,” Ham said.
Ambassador van Hell praised Hana Group's goal to reduce its carbon emissions by 100 percent by 2050, and for developing its own version of K-Taxonomy, which refers to the Korean government's guidelines for distinguishing green and non-green industries or activities.
"The Dutch government is highly interested in implementing green financing through innovation from the private sector," he said. "Korea and the Netherlands are partners for green financing. Through the meeting, we could create diverse opportunities of cooperation with Hana, a leader in ESG finance.”
As Hana Bank, a lender under the financial group, is the only Korean bank to operate a branch in Amsterdam, Hana Group hopes for increased cooperation with the Dutch authorities in future, the firm said. The bank launched its Amsterdam branch in 1979.
As part of his visit to Europe, which will continue through Wednesday, Ham will meet with global investors from the Netherlands and the UK. He plans to share Hana Group’s business achievements, asset quality and shareholder return policy, which have recently become a major interest for foreign investors, to encourage more engagement with Korea's capital market.
Ham, who took office in March 2022, has been working on expanding the finance group's global presence. It is his third overseas trip to boost investor relations for Hana Group this year, following earlier visits to Singapore and Hong Kong.
Ham will also attend the annual meetings of the World Bank Group and International Monetary Fund, held in Marrakech, Morocco until Sunday, where he will meet with figures from the global finance industry with the goal of broadening the group’s global business.
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