As the largest private equity bank in Poland, we are a significant participant in social and economic life. We are aware of this responsibility and do not try to avoid it. Therefore, we use our position to contribute to overcoming the challenges facing not only the Polish society and economy, but also the whole world. This is part of our strategy based on the UN Sustainable Development Goals, which identify the most important and urgent problems to be solved.
For us, responsible banking means taking into account a broad and long-term context of our operations. We want economic growth to be inclusive and sustainable. To achieve our goals, we combat financial exclusion, support entrepreneurs in creating new jobs and facilitate access to education and training, including through our Santander Universidades programme. The principle of sustainable growth, on the other hand, is implemented by promoting environmentally friendly solutions and supporting the transformation of the Polish energy sector.
In 2019, we successfully launched the first ESG-linked (Environmental, Social and Governance) loan on the Polish market, in which the margin depends on the borrower’s achievement of specific social and environmental goals. In June, we updated the package of sectoral and environmental policies and at the same time introduced a new policy relating to the mining and metals industry. The policies regulate, among other things, the rules of financing coal companies, including no new financing for coal mining, total reduction of exposure to coal mining by 2030, reduction of financing for existing coal-fired power plants and no financing for new coal-fired power plant projects.
A very important element of developing our responsible banking agenda is the organizational culture. This includes the mission, vision and values that we are expected to follow on a daily basis. It underpins our responsible banking strategy by focusing not only on ″what″ we do but also ″how″ we do it. We create and promote a diverse, inclusive, engaging and flexible workplace. We continue to work on improving the processes related to addressing social, environmental and management risks, which from a business perspective play an increasingly important role. The improvement of these processes will allow us to increase our involvement, for example in the development of RES in Poland.