On 12 November 2021, Ambassador Zheng Zeguang attended and addressed a ceremony held at the London Stock Exchange to mark the listing of $2.2 billion Bank of China ESG bonds. John Glen, Economic Secretary to the Treasury and City Minister, Anna Manz, CFO of LSEG and Fang Wenjian, General Manager of Bank of China Limited London Branch and Chief Executive Officer of Bank of China (UK) Limited also spoke at the event. The listing was witnessed by representatives from the UK Department for International Trade, the City of London, the Bank of England, the Green Finance Institute, China Britain Business Counsil, Institute of Directors, Representative Office (London) of the People’s Bank of China, London Office of China Banking Association.Following is the full text of the remarks of Ambassador Zheng.
Ladies and Gentlemen,
It is a real delight to join you at the ceremony for the listing of Bank of China ESG Bonds at the London Stock Exchange.
This listing of 2.2 billion USD of green bonds represents another concrete contribution from the Bank of China to climate response and sustainable development in China, the UK and beyond. It fully demonstrates the strong sense of social responsibility and the high efficiency in implementation of Chinese financial institutions.
On behalf of the Chinese Embassy in the UK, I’d like to extend my congratulations to the Bank of China and the London Stock Exchange!
In his written statement at the World Leaders Summit of COP26, President Xi Jinping reaffirmed China’s firm resolve to realise carbon peak before 2030 and carbon neutrality before 2060. He also made important proposals on upholding multilateral consensus, focusing on concrete actions and accelerating the green transition.
To achieve the carbon peak and neutrality targets, China has unveiled the guideline and top-level design. And we are also accelerating the formulation of a series of action plans in the key areas and sectors. We will coordinate the transition to low-carbon development and the need for improving people’s well-being, so as to strike a balance between development and emissions reduction. This will enable us to realise the goals of carbon peak and neutrality as scheduled.
When these goals come true, we will have realised the biggest reduction of carbon emissions intensity and the fastest leap from carbon peak to carbon neutrality in world history. This will be a huge contribution to global ecological conservation. For a developing country with a population of over 1.4 billion, reaching these targets requires extremely arduous efforts, but China will stride forward without hesitation and honour its commitments with concrete actions.
Now, as COP26 is about to conclude, the world needs real actions, just the kind that the Bank of China is taking. We hope that the contracting parties to the UNFCCC will live up to their pledges with concrete steps, strengthen solidarity and collaboration, and step up support for developing countries, so as to protect the common home of mankind.
China and the UK have respective strengths in green and low-carbon development, and great potentials for cooperation. Green finance is certainly a key area where our two sides can work together.
Since 2015, four Chinese financial institutions have issued nine green bonds with a value of 4.28 billion US dollars in the UK. Today’s listing is yet another outcome of the joint efforts of Chinese and British financial institutions. It is also a testament to the broad prospects for China-UK cooperation on green finance.
In a recent telephone conversation, President Xi Jinping and Prime Minister Boris Johnson reached important understanding on strengthening China-UK cooperation and promoting the healthy and steady development of the bilateral relationship. We stand ready to work with the UK side in the direction given by our leaders and encourage our businesses including financial institutions to carry out more practical cooperation, bring more tangible benefits to our peoples and make greater contribution to global climate action. I do hope that the London Stock Exchange will continue to be a facilitator and catalyst for such cooperation.
Once again, congratulations to BOC and LSE!