Novatek, Sberbank Ink Green Financing MoU

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Russia’s LNG export champion Novatek has signed a memorandum of understanding on potential “green financing” with state-controlled Sberbank, in line with its environmental, social and corporate governance (ESG) initiatives. “Green financing” is still not well developed in Russia, although some banks have said they would stop investing in businesses with unacceptable ESG risks (NC Apr.15'21). By signing the memorandum to cooperate in the field of ESG, Novatek and Sberbank “confirm their intentions to secure ‘green financing’ on projects relating to environmental protection and climate change mitigation, renewable energy development, production and transshipment of low-carbon or carbon-neutral products, as well as joint social initiatives,” the LNG producer said in a statement. The duo signed the memorandum on the sidelines of the St. Petersburg International Economic Forum last week, where Novatek also agreed on decarbonization deals with TotalEnergies and Fortum, as the company seeks to reduce the carbon footprint of its future LNG output to better fit its ambitious LNG expansion plans into the low-carbon economy. Sberbank took part in the financing of Novatek’s flagship Yamal LNG project in the Arctic and will contribute to the external financing of its second Arctic LNG 2 plant, scheduled in 2023. At the forum, Novatek, Sberbank and Gazprombank also signed a memorandum to finance a gas chemical plant in the Arctic, which might produce ammonia and hydrogen.

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