Under the Green Building Project, two reports were released on decarbonising Hong Kong buildings and improving building rating systems. “Decarbonising Hong Kong Buildings: Policy Recommendations and Next Steps” provides analysis on existing green buildings policies. This included amending the energy audit code, the prospect of carbon taxes, and linking together existing certifications. The second report, “Green Building Rating Systems Energy Benchmarking Study” determines whether existing green building rating systems are sufficient for Hong Kong’s decarbonisation strategy.
The report “Decarbonising Hong Kong Buildings” recommends the formation of a dedicated cross-departmental agency. It should comprise members of relevant bureaus and be responsible for coordinating all incentives and regulations necessary for the buildings sector to achieve net zero by 2050. Members should include, but are not limited to, the Environment Bureau, the Development Bureau, the Transport and Housing Bureau, and the Financial Services and the Treasury Bureau.
The “Green Building Rating Systems Energy Benchmarking Study” highlights that the energy aspect of performance-based rating systems, such as EDGE and NABER, contribute a significantly higher percentage to the overall certification compared to scoring-based rating systems. It also summarizes that improving energy efficiency and incorporating renewable energy strategies can help buildings reach net zero. Lastly, most of the rating systems do not validate the actual operational energy performance of new buildings before certification.
Based on the findings of the Green Building Project reports, in 2021, HKGFA and Civic Exchange will conduct pilot projects to speed up decarbonization in the building industry using innovative green finance, implement a roadmap to engage policy makers and extend the green building project to the Greater Bay Area.
Buildings account for 60% of GHG emissions in Hong Kong
Under the collaboration between HKGFA and Civic Exchange, the Green Building Project aims to speed up decarbonization by creating green finance opportunities in the building industry
Green and Sustainable Banking Working Group(2020)
The Working Group organized the Hong Kong Green and Sustainable Banking Webinar to support the Hong Kong Monetary Authority’s White Paper on Green and Sustainable Banking.
In response to various consultations by Hong Kong regulators, the working group consolidates the feedback from the membership base and shares the comments with the major stakeholders in the green and sustainable finance realm.
A Green Finance Glossary was prepared by the group to provide a brief explanation of key phrases to bankers and other industry stakeholders.
Multiple consultation responses from the Working Group were shared with the regulators in the hope that the industry suggestions can be considered and reflected in upcoming policies.
The Green and Sustainable Banking Working Group reflected on comments in the HKGFA Sustainable Finance Policy Review 2020 prepared by the Policy Research and Dissemination Working Group. The document provides an overview of the key policy developments in sustainable finance in Hong Kong, mainland China, and internationally in 2020. It concludes with HKGFA’s policy view on the developments in sustainable banking, an area that has seen major policy developments this past year.
*The Working Group aims to promote Hong Kong as a green finance centre and to support HKMA’s Green and Sustainable Banking initiative to raise awareness, increase engagement, and enhance the capabilities of the Banking sector in Hong Kong
*They delivered banking solutions to support the transition to a low carbon and sustainable economy
Green Bonds and Product Innovation Working Group(2020)
The Working Group organized the HKGFA New Trends Beyond Green, Social, and Sustainability (GSS) Bonds Webinar to share the latest trends in GSS Bonds and beyond.
A paper on climate transition finance was created: “Navigating Climate Transition Finance”. The paper jumps into the fast-growing global discussion on the topic of climate transition finance with an overview of existing terms and market discussions.
The Working Group also conducted a survey. The results were consolidated into a report called the Hong Kong Green and Sustainable Finance Survey. The survey aims to solicit opinions from market participants and stakeholders on their thoughts of the state of the market, opportunities and barriers, as well as key drivers to further develop Hong Kong as a leading green and sustainable finance center.
The climate transition finance paper and Hong Kong Green and Sustainable Finance Survey were launched in HKGFA 2020 Annual Forum in November 2020. The paper proposed a principles-based framework to define climate transition finance in context of market developments to date in China and Hong Kong but is also potentially regionally relevant.
Based on the survey, two thirds of respondents believe government support and leadership through policies and incentives to mobilise the market is key, as issuers and investors seek to overcome obstacles such as lack of relevant market infrastructure and inadequate financial incentives.
*Facilitate communication within the green bond community in Hong Kong
*Encourage green and sustainable product issuances in the capital market and sustainable investment, and also strive to promote Hong Kong as the green finance center