A revised Equator

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No, not the latest piece of global climate change data (although the recent pieces on acidified oceans and icequakes ring the warning bell even louder). This time it's good news. A few years ago, civil society called upon bankers to take greater responsibility for the projects in which they invest. And something remarkable happened. Banks who were used to competing with each other decided to collaborate and agree a level playing field on environmental and social standards - and they selected IFC’s standards as the model.

Since that time, much has been written about the Equator Principles, including the way they have evolved for many signatory institutions from a reputational risk management tool to a marketing concept used to secure new business. And a further evolution took place in London on Thursday, when the revised Equator Principles were officially launched. The revision was needed to take account of IFC's new social and environmental policy standards framework, but Equator Bank Financial Institutions also took the opportunity to revise other criteria, including a downward revision of the project finance threshold from $50m to $10m.

Lars Thunell, IFC's Executive Vice President, speaks of the impact of the Equator Principles on our website. Other perspectives can be found on the webpages of signatory banks.

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