In Uzbekistan, ESG is a relatively new concept and has not yet been widely accepted by companies, but awareness of the importance of sustainable and responsible investment is increasing. ESG-investing or, as it is also called, responsible investing is investing money in securities of companies that contribute to the development of society. The trend towards a more informed approach to the choice of financial instruments is explained by the entry into the market of a new generation of millennial investors, who are more concerned about global problems such as climate change than others.
If following ESG principles when doing business in Uzbekistan is only in its infancy, the market of responsible financial instruments is already undergoing a stage of active development. The Government of Uzbekistan was one of the first in the world to place government bonds aimed at financing sustainable development goals – Sovereign SDG Bonds. The funds received will be used to implement activities and projects in the field of education, water resources management, health, ecology, transport infrastructure development and green energy to achieve the nine priority national SDGs.
🔹The green lending market is also developing – the European Bank for Reconstruction and Development invested almost $ 690 million in 22 projects in Uzbekistan in 2021 for the development of renewable energy projects and infrastructure modernization. In 2022, national banks also joined the green finance market – JSIB "Ipoteka-Bank" will issue preferential loans for the purchase of energy-saving technologies by households.
🟢Thus, the sooner national companies realize the importance of following ESG principles when conducting their activities, the sooner they will be able to gain access to international green finance markets, as well as to national instruments of responsible financing that are gaining momentum.