The State of North Rhine-Westphalia issued again a Sustainability Bond in November 2019. Net proceeds finance environmental and social projects of the budgetary year 2019. The bond particularly targets investors focusing on socially responsible investments.
The concept of the Sustainability Bonds is closely related to the Sustainability Strategy for North Rhine-Westphalia of 14 June 2016. Progress in the implementation of the strategy is being measured using 60 indicators, which are assigned to the 19 fields of action of the Sustainability Strategy and the 17 SDGs. The first Sustainability Indicator Report was published in 2016. In addition, the indicators are regularly being updated, with results published on a dedicated website (www.nachhaltigkeitsindikatoren.nrw.de).
The Sustainability Strategy for North Rhine-Westphalia also serves as the political reference for the Sustainability Bonds. Based on the fields of action of the Sustainability Strategy, a framework with seven project categories has been developed for the Sustainability Bonds:
The Sustainability Bond #6 refers to 62 eligible projects from the State's 2019 budget. The projects have been selected according to the criteria and specifications set out in the framework. The main aspect is a clear environmental or social benefit on the basis of NRW's sustainability policy. A special focus lies on projects related to education, science, day care, integration, inclusion, infrastructure and green technologies. For the first time the portfolio comprises a project for the integration of young people into the labour market as well as a project for gender equality at universities. Compared to the previous Sustainability Bonds, the promotion of day care has been expanded. ISS ESG has audited the framework and the selected projects and has evaluated them positively.
The State of North Rhine-Westphalia successfully placed its sixth Sustainability Bond with a total volume of € 2.5 billion on the market on November 19 2019. The bond was issued for the first time in two tranches with different maturities of ten and 20 years.