International financial institutions
NIB has established cooperation with international financial institutions such as the Asian Development Bank, African Development Bank, Council of Europe Development Bank, European Bank for Reconstruction and Development, European Investment Bank, Inter-American Development Bank, as well as the IBRD, IDA, and IFC within the World Bank Group.
Furthermore, NIB has cooperation agreements with three regional multilateral banks: the Black Sea Trade & Development Bank, the Central American Bank for Economic Integration CABEI and the Development Bank of Latin America CAF. Through these institutions, NIB can operate also in countries where it has no agreement on financial cooperation.
Cooperation on sustainability & green finance
NIB cooperates with other international financial institutions and organisations to develop sound, coordinated and effective ways of promoting sustainable finance. In this context, the Bank participates in a number of international and regional forums to develop common standards and principles for greening the financial system.
- In 2022, NIB signed up for the Partnership for Carbon Accounting Financials (PCAF) to further strengthen the Bank’s climate agenda. The partnership follows NIB’s earlier commitment to the Task Force on Climate-related Financial Disclosures (TCFD) and allows the Bank to benefit from harmonized data and accounting methodologies in its disclosure processes.
- In 2021, NIB has joined the Coalition of Finance Ministers for Climate Action as an institutional partner. The Coalition has over 70 member countries and is working with various institutional partners supporting the efforts of Finance Ministers in designing and implementing policies to address climate change. It is currently chaired by the Finance Ministers of Indonesia and Finland with a secretariat managed by the World Bank and the IMF.
- In June 2020, NIB was re-elected as member of the Executive Committee of the Green Bond Principles (GBP) and Social Bond Principles (SBP). The “Principles” are a voluntary set of guidelines that promote the integrity, transparency and development of the green bond market. NIB was first elected member of the GBP’s Executive Committee in June 2016. During 2018–2020, NIB acted as chairman of the Committee. NIB is one of the coordinators of the Q&A Guidance Handbook and contributes to various work streams, such as the core Impact Reporting working group.
- In 2020, NIB joined Phase II of the UNEP-FI TCFD banking pilot project with 38 other global financial institutions. The programme focused on the identification, assessment and management of climate risks and opportunities.
- In 2019, NIB took part in the consultations of the EU Technical Expert Group on Sustainable Finance (TEG), which was set up by the European Commission to assist it in developing a unified taxonomy for sustainable economic activities, an EU green bond standard, and methodologies for low-carbon indices and metrics for climate-related disclosure.
- NIB joined the Network for Greening the Financial System (NGFS) as an observer in 2019. The NGFS is composed of central banks and financial supervisors. Its purpose is to help strengthen the global response required to meet the goals of the Paris Agreement.
- NIB signed the Principles of Responsible Investment (PRI), the Principles for Responsible Banking (PRB) and the Task Force on Climate-related Financial Disclosures (TCFD) in December 2019.
- Since 2013, NIB applies the International Financial Institution Framework for a Harmonised Approach to Greenhouse Gas Accounting. CO2 estimates are an important parameter in assessing a project’s eligibility for financing under the Bank’s environmental mandate.
In 2015, IFI working groups developed sector specific accounting principles for renewable energy, energy efficiency and the transportation sector on the basis of the harmonised approach to project-level greenhouse gas accounting.
- NIB works together with the Baltic Marine Environment Protection Commission, also known as HELCOM, to develop common environmental objectives and actions for the Baltic Sea.
- The Bank also participates in the Multilateral Financial Institutions’ Working Group on Environmental and Social Standards (MFI-WGESS), a platform for MFIs to work together on issues related to responsible financing and sustainable development.
- Since 2006, NIB is signatory to the European Principles for the Environment (EPE) concerning environmental management in the financing of projects.
Participation in various networks allows NIB to learn and share experiences on climate risks as well as environmental, social and governance (ESG) factors. As a signatory for PRI, PRB and TCFD, the Bank is committed to continuously integrate ESG factors in its investment analysis and decision-making processes based on the best available practices.
The Bank’s policies and activities are evaluated by independent ESG data and research providers. The unsolicited ratings allow NIB to track its performance and identify areas to improve. Below are NIB’s most recent scores as rated by four different ESG rating agencies.
ISS ESG has rated over 12,500 issuers for sustainable investment policies.
In September 2023, ISS provided NIB with a “Prime” ESG Corporate Rating.
An MSCI ESG Rating is designed to measure a company’s resilience to long-term, industry material environmental, social and governance (ESG) risks.
As of May 2023, NIB received an MSCI ESG Rating of AAA.
Sustainalytics is a leading independent provider of ESG and corporate governance ratings, research and analysis.
In June 2023, Sustainalytics gave NIB an ESG Risk Rating of 6.4 (negligible risk).
Vigeo Eiris (V.E) is an international provider of ESG research and services for investors and organisations.
In October 2021, V.E gave NIB an ESG overall score of 65/100 (advanced).
In addition to financing projects directly with larger companies, NIB channels financing to small and medium-sized enterprises (SMEs) through financial intermediaries. Loan programmes with intermediaries broaden the geography of NIB’s operations, as they allow the Bank to reach companies with specific knowledge of national and regional markets.
In NIB’s member countries, commercial banks usually act as intermediaries. Outside the member countries, NIB cooperates with financial intermediaries, mainly state-owned development banks, and with governmental intermediaries, such as ministries of finance and economy.
Nordic Finance Group
Together, the three financial institutions located in Helsinki, Finland,—NIB, the Nordic Development Fund and Nordic Environment Finance Corporation—form the Nordic Finance Group.
NDF is the joint development finance institution of the five Nordic countries and facilitates climate change investments primarily in low-income countries.
Visit NDF’s website
NEFCO is an international financial institution established by the Nordic countries to increase environmental awareness in Eastern and Central Europe by providing financing to small and medium-sized environmental projects.
Visit NEFCO’s website
In a statement issued on 8 March 2022, the European Union, Iceland and Norway have condemned in the strongest possible terms Russia’s unprecedented military aggression against Ukraine and have therefore suspended all activities of the Northern Dimension policy which involve Russia and Belarus until further notice. NIB has put NDEP related projects on hold.
The Northern Dimension (ND) is an instrument of cooperation between four equal partners, the European Union, Russia, Norway and Iceland. Geographically, the ND covers Northwest Russia, the Baltic Sea and the Arctic regions, including the Barents region. The USA and Canada hold observer status in the ND.
The Northern Dimension policy aims to support stability, welfare and sustainable development in the region by means of practical cooperation. The ND is an instrument through which the European Union, Russia, Norway and Iceland cooperate in selected fields, such as the environment, nuclear safety or social welfare and health care issues.
The Northern Dimension also addresses questions that specifically conern the northern areas, such as the vulernable Arctic environment and matters related to indigenous peoples.
The main regional organisations active in the Northern Dimension are the Council of the Baltic Sea States, the Barents Euro Arctic Council, the Arctic Council and the Nordic Council of Ministers.
Northern Dimension Environmental Partnership
NIB is a partner in the Northern Dimension Environmental Partnership (NDEP), which is a cooperative effort to coordinate and support the financing of urgent environmental investments in north-western regions of Russia. The partnership combines the expertise and resources of the European Commission, the Russian Federation, the EBRD, the EIB, NIB and the World Bank.
The NDEP promotes sustainable solutions in wastewater treatment, solid waste management, energy and water supply, as well as the treatment of nuclear waste.
Northern Dimension Partnership on Transport and Logistics
The Northern Dimension Partnership on Transportation and Logistics (NDPTL) was established in October 2009. The current members of the NDPTL are Belarus, Denmark, Estonia, Finland, Germany, Latvia, Lithuania, Norway, Poland, Russia, Sweden and the European Commission.
NDPTL endeavours to accelerate the implementation of major infrastructure projects within the Northern Dimension region, serving as a regional forum for transport and logistics issues and complementing the work of cooperation structures already in existence, with project financing to stem from national budgets, the EU, international financial institutions and relevant national financial institutions.
A secretariat for the partnership was set up within NIB in Helsinki in February 2011 with the objective of providing administrative and technical support to the Steering Committee and High-Level Meetings in their task of monitoring the implementation of the Partnership.
The objectives of the Partnership are detailed in the Memorandum of Understanding signed in Naples on 21 October 2009 on a ministerial level by eleven countries and the European Commission.
Read more on projects supported by the NDPTL Support Fund here.