Evolving our trade ecosystem to function in a way that uses our natural resources wisely, reduces greenhouse gas emissions and makes our world more equitable requires significant investment. But it’s an investment worth making and one we're here to support.
It’s also a big opportunity. It’s one of the ways Canadian businesses can innovate to achieve longer-term business growth and become more competitive on the global stage.
Part of our past and future
Sustainable finance has been a key part of our business for many years. We were the first Canadian financial institution to issue a green bond in 2014 and the first export credit agency to commit to net zero emissions by 2050. Today, we’re focused on making net zero across our business lines a reality and supporting Canadian businesses to be a part of that journey. Our sustainable finance solutions enable businesses to continue to grow while transitioning to more sustainable business practices and materializing their ESG objectives.
Our approach and solutions
Our approach revolves around our customers. Sustainable objectives are big and complex, meaning there is no one-size-fits-all solution. We work closely with our customers to develop solutions that will work for them and that will drive real results when it comes to reducing carbon emissions and creating a stronger, more equitable economy. Our solutions will continue to evolve alongside our customers, best practices, and the needs of society and the environment.
Our Sustainable Finance Framework outlines our criteria for classifying our business as sustainable. Developed with the support of leading ESG experts and with reference to industry guidelines, the framework enables the monitoring, tracking and reporting of sustainable business activities toward our ESG objectives.
The framework applies to EDC’s direct lending business activities, including corporate lending, structured and project finance and mid-market lending portfolios.
With demand for clean technologies growing across key industries, the world needs Canada’s innovators. For more than 10 years EDC has helped Canadian clean technology companies of all sizes achieve success on the global stage by providing trade knowledge, financing solutions, equity, insurance and connections.
Historically underrepresented groups face barriers accessing traditional or mainstream financial and knowledge solutions. We recognize the need to do more to support these businesses as they look to grow their companies internationally. Our Inclusive Trade Investments Program provides equity capital to Canadian exporting businesses owned or led by people who identify as women, Indigenous, Black or racialized, 2SLGBTQ+, and/or living with disabilities (diverse businesses).
Our sustainable financing guarantee is a new financial solution developed as part of our work to enable net zero by 2050. It aims to help medium and large-sized Canadian businesses transition from carbon-intensive operations to those that can eliminate or significantly reduce emissions. It is a risk-sharing solution with several Canadian financial institutions that we hope to continue expanding in order to increase the capacity of the Canadian financial sector to provide sustainably-linked funding.
Transparency and reporting
It’s important that our stakeholders understand how we think about sustainable finance and how we track our progress. We are committed to accurately measuring and reporting on our initiatives in alignment with international best practices and the United Nations Sustainable Development Goals. We provide this information in our integrated annual reports, as well as our annual green bond impact reports.