The bond series, which supports the World Bank’s strategic focus on conservation and sustainable use of fresh and salt water resources, forms part of the Bank’s issuance strategy to engage investors around the SDGs since their launch in 2015. The focus for the new series is to support SDG 6 (clean water and sanitation) and SDG 14 (life below water) and follows bond series earlier this year that focused on gender and health and nutrition.
Kristalina Georgieva, World Bank Chief Executive Officer, said: "Seventy percent of the planet’s surface is water, yet degraded ocean resources and lack of access to safe water negatively affect the lives of hundreds of millions of people. Through this bond series we will remind investors and the markets that we must protect our water and marine resources today for the generations of tomorrow."
The World Bank focuses on conservation and sustainable use of water through two lenses and will look to harness the support of investors that prioritize these areas: first, sustainable water management to ensure access to safe water and water security; and second, sustainable use of ocean and marine resources. The bond series was framed by the recent "World Water Week" and the upcoming "Our Ocean" conference, which will take place in Bali in October.
The World Bank is the world’s largest multilateral source of financing for water in developing countries, with 37 billion USD in water-related investments. This includes the World Bank’s water portfolio of 170 projects worth 26.7 billion USD, as well as projects with a water sector-related component totaling approximately 10 billion USD.
The institution also works with countries to promote strong governance of marine and coastal resources to support sustainable fisheries and aquaculture, make coastlines more resilient, establish coastal and marine protected areas, and reduce pollution. This "Blue Economy" approach supports economic growth, social inclusion and the preservation or improvement of livelihoods while at the same time ensuring the environmental sustainability of oceans and coastal areas. The World Bank’s active Blue Economy portfolio is worth 3.7 billion USD.
With annual issuances between 50-60 billion USD, all World Bank bonds finance programs that support the Sustainable Development Goals. The bonds are aligned with the sustainability bond guidelines published by the International Capital Markets Association (ICMA). The World Bank is also a member of the Executive Committee of the Green Bond Principles. A key priority for the World Bank’s engagement in the capital markets is to build strategic partnerships with investors to raise awareness for the role of private sector financing in development.
Source: The World Bank.