Standard Chartered has announced the launch of a sustainability-focused trade loan for its financial institution clients, enabling them to provide additional liquidity to support ESG-related trade flows. 

The London-headquartered lender says the loan offering will provide “much-needed” liquidity to financial institutions globally, in turn accelerating borrowers’ efforts to meet their sustainability targets and net zero commitments. 

Eligibility for the loan is based on Standard Chartered’s green and sustainable product framework, which was co-authored with ESG ratings provider Morningstar Sustainalytics. 

Initial focus is on sustainable end use in the renewable energy sector, such as projects involving wind turbines, solar panels and battery storage systems, the bank says. 

“The lack of funding for sustainability initiatives continues to be a challenge for companies,” Standard Chartered says. 

According to a report published by the bank in April, 70% of large corporates and mid-sized companies are being held back from making ESG commitments by difficulties accessing finance. The bank describes obtaining funding as “a major issue’. 

Samuel Mathew, the lender’s global head of flow and financial institutions trade, adds that the loan offering will help clients “play a greater role in driving sustainable outcomes by directing capital to where it matters most in their markets”. 

The loan follows Standard Chartered’s launch of a set of sustainable trade finance solutions in March 2021, based on the Loan Market Association’s green and sustainability-linked loan principles. 

In December, the bank announced it was piloting a sustainable supply chain finance programme in the United Arab Emirates, which it said was the first of its kind in the Middle East.