Loopholes Remain in SMBC Group’s New Coal Policy – Japan’s Megabank Still Not Aligned with the Paris Agreement
On May 12, 2021, Sumitomo Mitsui Financial Group published a statement entitled “Reinforcing Efforts against Climate Change,” announcing revisions to its coal-fired power sector policy as well as updated targets for green and sustainability finance. Environmental NGOs welcomed the strengthening of policies toward decarbonization, but issued the following statement, recognizing that there are still many challenges to be addressed for the SMBC Group to set a business strategy consistent with the Paris Agreement.
Sumitomo Corporation’s new coal policy still includes major loopholes – NGOs urge Sumitomo Corporation not to participate in the EPC bidding for Matarbari Units 3 and 4 –
On May 7, Sumitomo Corporation revised its “Policies on Climate Change Issues” and announced that it will not be involved in any new coal-fired power generation business neither IPP nor EPC. However, the policy includes an exception for the Matarbari coal-fired power plant's units 3 and 4, in Bangladesh. In response, environmental NGOs released a joint statement.
Japan’s largest bank MUFG tightens coal power and forest sector policies – but far from aligned with Paris Agreement
Japan’s largest bank Mitsubishi UFJ Financial Group (MUFG) announced a revision of its Environmental and Social Policy Framework (1) policy for the coal-fired power, forestry and palm oil sectors.
[Joint Statement] Mitsubishi UFJ tightens its financing for coal-fired power, but it’s still not aligned with Japan’s 2050 Net-zero Emissions target
On April 26, Mitsubishi UFJ Financial Group revised its “MUFG Environmental and Social Policy Framework”, announcing that regarding the coal-fired power generation sector, the policy will apply to financing new and existing power generation facilities, and that exceptions will be limited to coal-fired power generations equipped with technologies such as CCUS and mixed combustion. Environmental NGOs released a statement welcoming this step forward but emphasizing the need for further improvement since this policy still falls behind Japan's goal to achieve net-zero emissions by 2050.
[Joint Statement] Japan lags behind South Korea in overseas coal financing at the Leaders Summit on Climate ~Japan needs to withdraw support for coal plants in Indonesia and Bangladesh~
At the Leaders Summit on Climate on April 22, the South Korean government announced to end financing for overseas coal-fired power projects. However, no such announcement was made by the Japanese government, in particular, no mention was made about withdrawing support for coal projects in Indonesia and Bangladesh which are expected to be supported by JICA. In response, environmental NGOs released a joint statement.