Japan becomes latest country to launch public/private green finance group

Members come from Finance Ministry, OECD, banks, insurance and asset managers

Japan is the latest country to launch a big-hitting panel of experts to develop its green finance market, following hot on the heels of the UK, Canada and Hong Kong.

The Green Finance Network of Japan has been set up by former Deputy Secretary General of the OECD, Rintaro Tamaki – now President of the Japan Centre for International Finance – along with fellow OECD alumni Hideki Takada, who was a Senior Policy Analyst for Green Finance and Investment before returning to Japan’s Ministry of Finance this summer; and Takejiro Sueyoshi, Special Advisor to UNEP FI and the CEO of the Green Finance Organisation Japan.

Takada pointed out that the green finance agenda “is gaining the momentum in Japan as well as in the world”, saying he wanted to continue his personal commitment to the topic, despite working on non-climate related issues in his role at the Finance Ministry.

Two years ago, the Japanese Ministry of the Environmental launched a dedicated green bond group to help grow the asset class.

This new platform will work with stakeholders in Japan and overseas, both in the public and private sectors, to stimulate and promote green finance more broadly. It will organise workshops and events, facilitate information sharing between institutions and sectors and attempt to connect domestic players with global ones.

Its first event will be held in Tokyo next month on November 3.

The move is the latest in a long list of national efforts around the world to create expert groups on sustainable finance.

Just last week Luxembourg launched a Sustainable Finance Roadmap. Earlier this year, the EU announced its new Technical Expert Group – a 35-strong committee of public and private players that will help it develop its Action Plan, including a taxonomy on green finance, green bond standards and new benchmarking guidelines. The UK also announced a Green Finance Institute, in collaboration with the City of London and the UK Government, to stimulate sustainable finance in the country.

Canada has quietly launched a smaller team, including pension fund representatives, to look at how it can develop regulation and policy to support a sustainable finance agenda. Most recently, Ma Jun – the man behind much of China’s green finance push in recent years – was named the head of a new Green Finance Association in Hong Kong last month, which will focus on establishing a market in the country.Other nations that have multi-stakeholder expert groups include France, Germany, Brazil and China.

Current members include:

– Tomoaki Ishigaki from Japan’s Ministry of Foreign Affairs / Office of the Prime Minister

– Haruhiko Nishimura, Aya Nagata, Tadashi Shibakawa, Naomi Sugo and Makoto Yakushiji, all from the Minister of the Environment

– Satoshi Ikeda from the Financial Services Agency

– Jun Takashina and Mayuko Hirai from the Ministry of Economy, Trade and Industry

– Kiichi Tokuoka from the Ministry of Finance

– Teiko Kudo, Sumitomo Mitsui Banking Corporation

– Amane Yamasaki, MUFG Bank

– Koji Omachi, Citigroup

– Osamu Morishita, Mizuho Securities

– Sachie Ii, Mizuho Securities

– Mana Nakazora, BNP Paribas

– Megumi Muto, Japan International Cooperation Agency

– Tsutomu Sato, Japan Bank for International Cooperation

– Hiroyuki Kato, Development Bank of Japan

– Mitsugu Sumiya, Axa Life Insurance

– Hiroshi Ozeki, at Nippon Life Insurance

– Masaaki Nagamura, Tokio Marine and Nichido Fire Insurance

– Shizuko Omi, Amundi Japan

– Shigeki Miwa, SoftBank Group / SB Energy

– Mariko Kawaguchi, Daiwa Institute of Research

– Eiichiro Adachi, The Japan Research Institute

– Akane Enatsu, Nomura Institute of Capital Markets Research

– Akiko Shigemoto, Institute for Global Environmental Strategies

– Yoshihiro Fujii, Research Institute for Environmental Finance

– Tsuyoshi Mizuguchi, Takasaki City University of Economics

– Yukari Takamura, Nagoya University

– Masamichi Kono, Deputy Secretary-General, OECD

– Tsuzuri Sakamaki, Senior Policy Analyst, Green Finance and Investment, OECD