London, December 7th, 2017
One might wonder why a bank would be interested in joining a steel industry initiative. “It is only natural”, says Francis Sullivan from HSBC. “For more than 10 years, HSBC has been working with different economic sectors, for example forestry, energy and so on in order to speed up the process of transformation to sustainability. The steel sector is just a logical continuation of our sustainability-related work”.
He added: “We see the risk that with low-carbon policy development, commercial bank financing of steel manufacturers might be restricted. But we believe that additional finance will be needed to help the steel sector transform faster towards lower carbon production. We have high hopes that the ResponsibleSteel™ initiative will codify, reinforce and incentivise this transition.
“The international standardization approach being implemented by ResponsibleSteel™ is one of the main reasons for our involvement”, stressed Francis. “Sometimes national regulations are weaker than standards agreed among companies. In those cases the private sector has a major role to play in the sustainability transition, by uniting all actors and developing standards relevant for everyone. This is the case for the steel sector and ResponsibleSteel™”.
“Second, a multi-stakeholder approach (involving actors from civil society, manufacturing and production) is another benefit. Real change is possible only with everyone being on board. The sustainability transition is not an exception. We need buyers to ask for responsible steel and we need manufacturers to hear this. We need ideas from NGOs, international organizations and consumers”.
Thus, with its international multi-stakeholder standards-based approach, ResponsibleSteel™ can become a bridge between responsible producers and consumers of steel and help support the financing of the transition to sustainability.
Find out more about ResponsibleSteel™ Membership here.back to news