SIFs join for G20 green appeal, UK fund managers petition Gordon Brown

Investors send out sustainability calls for London Summit.

Investors represented by the six regional lobby groups for sustainable and social investment have come together to call on G20 world leaders meeting in London to “transform global capital markets” by placing low-carbon, resource efficient and socially sustainable policies at the heart of the G20’s proposed $1 trillion economic recovery package announced today (April 2).
The appeal has been accompanied by a separate letter to UK Prime Minister Gordon Brown signed by some of the biggest asset managers and pension funds in the UK representing over £400bn in assets, calling on him to pledge significant support for ‘green’ policies within agreed fiscal stimulus packages proposed by the G20 leaders.
The joint call to transform markets was issued by ASrIA (Asia), Eurosif (Europe), RIAA (Australia), Social Investment Forum (US), SIO (Canada) and UKSIF (UK). It calls for financial instruments and incentives to build a green economy by using private investment alongside government support. Other measures proposed include greater corporate transparency on ESG issues, improved shareholder rights and promotion of inclusion of ESG factors into credit ratings, sell-side investment research and financial advice.The letter to Gordon Brown, convened by UKSIF and Tomorrow’s Company, the UK-based business-led think tank, was signed by the chief executives of UK fund managers at Aviva, The Co-op, F&C, Hermes, Jupiter, CCLA, Rathbone Greenbank and KBC, as well as the pension fund heads of the Environment Agency and the London Pension Fund Authority.
Paul Abberley, chief executive at Aviva Investors, said: “Green investment isn’t only for governments. Many private investors also want the opportunity to invest in green projects such as low-carbon energy and energy efficiency. This requires the right kind of policies and appropriate financial instruments. We are keen to keep talking to governments about how private sector investment can be mobilised to help make the recovery from this economic crisis a sustainable one.”
The communique from the G20, which promised $750bn in financing for the International Monetary Fund and $250bn for trade finance, also included reforms to the global financial system that will bring hedge funds and credit rating agencies under global regulation. Action was also agreed on tax havens, with the OECD scheduled to publish a list of tax havens that are not compliant with transparency requests.