Monaco is looking to capitalise on a global movement towards sustainable investment and secure its future position as a financial heavyweight in Europe while helping to save the environment.

Alongside Switzerland and Luxembourg, the Principality of Monaco is one of the main European centres for private banking activity.

Two years ago, a working group was formed to explore the future of banking in the Principality and the first order of business was innovations in digital finance. This resulted in a very ground breaking Security Token Offering (STO) bill, which the National Council voted into law in October 2020 and which positions Monaco at the forefront of digital investment opportunities that are rubber stamped by the government.

Now, a new joint working group has been formed comprising members of the government and the Monaco Association for Financial Activities (AMAF), to tackle a new initiative called ‘Monaco Sustainable Finance’.

It aligns Monaco’s unique financial position with Prince Albert’s decades-long commitment to sustainable development.

Related stories: Monaco advances its digital finance strategy

Across the globe, Environment, Social and Governance (ESG) and Socially Responsible Investment (SRI) factors are being integrated into the financial analysis and investments of bankers, fund managers, family offices and institutions who understand that their implementation constitutes a major factor in international competitiveness.

According to the latest Wealth Report, more than 40% of ultra high net worth individuals (UHNWIs) are more interested in ESG-focused investments than 12 months ago, and 22% are excited by opportunities arising from the ESG agenda.

Meanwhile, new research by Barclays Private Bank shows that two thirds of family offices now want to widen risk assessments to incorporate more ESG factors.

Related stories: “If Covid was a systemic wave, climate is a systemic tsunami”

“All these actors have become aware of their share of responsibility in solving global challenges and in implementing the changes essential to the fight against global warming,” said the government in announcing the launch of the initiative. “Taking sustainable development into account in management processes therefore contributes to achieving financial objectives on the one hand, and on the other hand the major objectives targeted by the Paris Agreement on Climate and/or United Nations Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs).”

Photo by Stéphane Danna, Government Communication Department

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