Climate policy of banks getting better, insufficient for women’s rights |...

Many Dutch banks are getting better and better when it comes to sustainability. There is room for improvement in terms of women’s rights and tax avoidance. The Fair Bank Guide states this on the basis of research, the results of which were published on Tuesday.

This shows that the three major banks, ING, ABN AMRO and Rabobank, have clearly shown improvements in the field of sustainability compared to two years ago.

For example, ABN and ING are more transparent about the CO2 footprint of some of their business loans. ABN has also developed concrete targets for loans to energy companies, among others.

The Bankwijzer states that Triodos and de Volksbank, the company behind ASN, score the best in sustainability. A negative outlier is Van Lanschot, which according to the researchers has made no progress in recent years.

The three major banks are doing noticeably less well in terms of tax avoidance and women’s rights. For example, from companies that borrow money from them, the banks do not ask for openness about their tax payments and settlements with the tax authorities.

In addition, six of the eight banks surveyed are said to be inadequate when it comes to tackling discrimination against women in companies they finance. Promoting more women to the top and reducing the pay gap between men and women could also be improved.

The Fair Bank Guide looks at the policy of banks on various social themes, including sustainability, human rights and public health. The emphasis is on the choices that banks make when financing other companies.

The banks investigated are ABN AMRO, ING, Rabobank, Volksbank (ASN), Triodos, Van Lanschot, Bunq and NIBC. It is an initiative of Amnesty International, Milieudefensie, Oxfam Novib, PAX and World Animal Protection.

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