SEK issues its first green bond

SEK (the Swedish Export Credit Corporation) issues its first green bond, amounting to USD 500 million with a maturity of 5 years. The funds from the issue will be used to finance exports of Swedish environmental technology and know-how throughout the world. SEK’s framework for green bonds incorporates a measure of carbon dioxide reduction in the projects that are financed, providing investors with a tool to evaluate the emissions reductions resulting from their investments.

SEK is the first European Eport Cedit Institution to issue a green bond.

“We want to contribute to the development of the green bond market and we’re pleased that this issue was well received by the market and that a high percentage of environmentally focused investors participated. The bond was oversubscribed quickly, despite market conditions not being optimal, in part because of continued uncertainty surrounding Greece,” said Per Åkerlind, Executive Vice President of SEK.

Around 65 percent of purchasers of the bond are ‘ESG’ investors (with a focus on environmental, social and corporate governance issues). In geographical terms, most interest was from Europe (53 percent) and North America (33 percent). Some 29 percent of the bond was purchased by central banks, and a further 29 percent was subscribed by asset management companies.

“Sustainability has long been an important aspect of our business and the green bond market provides us with a tool to earmark capital for a transition to a low-carbon economy,” said SEK’s Chief Sustainability Officer Johan Henningsson.

The arranging banks for the transaction were BofA Merrill Lynch, Credit Agricole CIB, HSBC and SEB.

SEK’s mission is to ensure access to financial solutions for the Swedish export industry on commercial and sustainable terms. SEK has a complementary role in the market, which means we act as a complement to bank and capital market financing for exporters wanting a range of financing sources. SEK’s vision is to strengthen the competitiveness of Swedish exporters, which helps create employment and sustainable growth in Sweden.