Around the globe, a wave of innovation is sweeping across the financial sector, from public equities to bonds, real estate to insurance, venture investing to small-business lending. In each of these areas, innovative players are using an ever-growing range of instruments to achieve social and environmental benefits, while producing attractive returns. This is the exciting field of sustainable finance, and it is growing fast.
Promising shoots of innovation have emerged in Asia, but progress is highly uneven, and the vast potential of sustainable finance is still to be fully realized. Take a deep dive into Asia’s four largest economies — China, India, Japan, and Indonesia — to highlight how innovation in sustainable finance is helping mobilize private capital at scale to solve important social and environmental challenges. We will also highlight some opportunity areas, where we see issues not being addressed by sustainable finance or opportunities to bring existing sustainable finance models to greater scale.