UK Export Finance has adopted the Equator Principles, a global framework aiming to promote sustainable project financing.

Introduced in 2003 and already adopted by 80 financial institutions, the Equator Principles are a risk management framework to determine, assess and manage environmental, social and human rights risk in projects.

Louis Taylor, UKEF’s CEO, says: “In adopting the Equator Principles, UKEF joins international financial institutions and export credit agencies including numerous partner banks with which UKEF works frequently.

“This global framework will give UK exporters supported by UKEF confidence that environmental, social and human rights issues that may carry ethical or reputational risk have been given consideration as part of UKEF’s support to relevant projects. In adopting the Equator Principles, we do not anticipate any additional administrative burden to UK exporters applying for export finance support.

“UKEF becoming an Equator Principles Institution is in line with the UK government’s drive to promote sustainable business practices following the agreement of the Sustainable Development Goals at the UN General Assembly last year.”

As an ECA, UKEF also follows the OECD Recommendation on Common Approaches for Officially Supported Export Credits and Environmental and Social Due Diligence.

According to the Equator Principles Association, 70% of project finance debt for projects in emerging markets are now covered by the standards.