China's green bond market: Fighting climate change with finance
Updated 22:11, 20-Nov-2018
CGTN's Khushboo Razdan & Wang Haidi
‍Forty years after the implementation of its reform and opening-up policy, China is not only the world's second largest economy, but also a world leader in green finance. In 2017 alone, China issued one-third of the world's green bonds, a relatively new field that focuses on financing activities that benefit the environment. Now, more foreign investors are getting easier access to China's booming green bond market.
"Harnessing the financial community behind climate change is a very powerful tool," said Peter Ling-Vannerus, chief representative of Skandinaviska Enskilda Banken (SEB) in Beijing, adding that "10 years back, the five major risks to the global community, identified by the World Economic Forum, majorly involved political problems but in the latest report all major risk areas are linked to environment."
SEB was a key partner when the World Bank issued its first green bond for institutional investors in 2008.
"We are very impressed with China, it's the second largest issuer of green bonds, and it is right behind the US. In 2016, China issued the maximum green bonds in the world, all this has happened in a very short period of time," said Ling-Vannerus.
In 2017, Chinese institutions issued green bonds worth 38.6 billion US dollars. Bloomberg estimates that China will be the largest driver of renewable investment with 100 billion US dollars set to be invested annually in this sector. Through 2020, China is projected to account for one out of every three US dollar invested in renewables.
"China has been a leader in defining and growing the green bond market, now they've come up with other bonds like social bonds, education bonds and even cultural bonds," said Ling-Vannerus, adding that more and more people are now willing to invest in sustainable assets.
Gaun Anping, a lawyer based in Beijing, said that real estate companies are being encouraged to build eco-friendly residential properties. "Every time a company approaches a bank for investment, the banking system is now required to ask about efficient energy systems for those development projects."
"Standards differ depending on the province but if you want to set up a project you must meet the clean energy standards set by the local governments," Gaun added. 
40 years with Laurence Brahm: A marathon of experiences and ideas” is a special CGTN program on China's reform and opening-up. The 10-episode series explores many sides to reform and opening-up over the years and offers a unique perspective on the seismic shifts that have rippled through China's economy, policies, and social fabric. The program is livestreamed at every day from November 15 to 25.
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