Philippines expects to benefit from sustainable finance framework

THE international framework for sustainable finance could serve as a benchmark guiding the Philippines towards more appropriate goals in terms of climate change risk management, Finance Assistant Secretary Paola Sherina A. Alvarez said.

“The Sustainable Finance Integrity Framework is actually useful as a metric in terms of measuring the developing countries’ ambitions, and what we have been doing is relatively ambitious in the context of our own economic development progress,” Ms. Alvarez said in a forum late Monday.

The government set a target of a 75% reduction in greenhouse gas emissions by 2030 as part its commitment to the Paris Agreement on climate change mitigation.

She said the goal is “ambitious” enough in the context of a large low-income population, adding that the Philippines cannot yet afford to achieve net-zero emissions.

“But from the non-government organizations’ point of view… this ambition might not seem to be too ambitious. So for them, we’re not being ambitious enough,” Ms. Alvarez said.

The Climate Policy Initiative think tank published a consultation draft of the Sustainable Finance Integrity Framework late Monday to solicit input from an advisory council, which consists of officials and organizations worldwide.

Follow up analysis will be conducted by November to further refine the framework. The updated framework and benchmarks will also be published that month.

Aside from the government, Ms. Alvarez said the framework can also help the private sector measure whether their commitments to sustainability and climate change mitigation are enough or exceed their actual capacity.

“The draft framework is intended as a contribution to a clear pathway to financial system integrity and materiality that will help smooth the financial sector’s move to sustainability and net zero and reinforce the multiplier effect these actions will have on achievements in the real economy,” according to the document. — Beatrice M. Laforga

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