Rabobank awarded top spot in sustainability rankings

Rabobank has topped a sustainability ranking of major banks for the way it applies Environmental Social Governance (ESG) data in its services and approach to risk.

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Sustainalytics, which compiled the rankings, said that the risk of Rabobank incurring financial damage as result of environmental and social policy was “negligible”.

The Dutch bank was languishing at 62nd place in the rankings just four years ago, but earned a place in the top 10 two years later before climbing to second position last year.

Director of sustainability, Bas Rüter, said: “Rabobank’s number one position speaks volumes about how we’re successfully putting into practice the ambitions set out in our Sustainably Successful Together strategy.

“Rabobank also reports on its sustainability performance in its annual report, which gives investors extra comfort.”

The ranking takes into account the content of the banks’ sustainability policies and how they apply them in practice.

Rabobank earned high scores on corporate and product policy, human capital and integrating ESG data into its lending operations.

And although its scores on data privacy and security and business ethics were slightly lower, the Sustainalytics said the risk remains low.

“When making lending decisions, Rabobank looks at the extent to which a client complies with our sustainability policy. Prospective clients may only become clients if they comply with the policy,” Rüter continued.

“Existing clients must also comply. If they do not meet the requirements we enter into a dialogue with them concerning the necessary changes. If the required changes are not made, the bank suspends provision of services.

“This integration of policy into our lending operations is extremely important to investors.”

 
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Chris Seekings is a reporter for TRANSFORM

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