A.P. Moller – Maersk (Maersk) has launched its Green Finance Framework designed to allow the company to issue a variety of sustainable financing instruments which may include bonds, loans, project finance and other instruments. By establishing the new Green Finance Framework, Maersk intends to align its funding strategy with its goal to become carbon neutral by 2050.
To start with, the company successfully placed its inaugural 10-year, €500-million green bond to fund the build of its first feeder vessel and the ground-breaking series of 8 large ocean-going container vessels which will be capable of operating on carbon-neutral methanol by 2023 and 2024, respectively.
The transaction was met with strong demand and was several times oversubscribed. The transaction priced at coupon of 0.75%, the lowest coupon ever for Maersk.
Issuing Green Financing Instruments is a further step to integrating sustainability into our financing operations as it is an effective tool for channelling investments to projects with positive environmental impact and thereby contributing to the achievement of the UN Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) and the Paris Agreement. With this green bond, we aim at diversifying our investor base by reaching out to new investors and increasing the transparency of our ESG ambitions and performance even further towards our stakeholders.
Cicero Green was appointed to review Maersk’s Green Finance Framework and ultimately verify its alignment with the ICMA Green Bond Principles 2021 and the Green Loan Principles 2021 and market practices. Based on the overall assessment of the eligible green assets under this framework and governance and transparency considerations, Maersk’s Green Finance Framework has received a Cicero Medium Green shading and a governance score of Excellent.
Cicero Shades of Green AS provides independent, research-based evaluations of green bond investment frameworks to determine their environmental robustness. Cicero’s second opinions are graded Dark Green, Medium Green and Light Green to offer investors better insight into the environmental quality of green bonds.
Dark green is allocated to projects and solutions that correspond to the long-term vision of a low-carbon and climate-resilient future.
Medium green is allocated to projects and solutions that represent steps toward the long-term vision, but are not quite there yet. Fossil-fueled technologies that lock in long-term emissions do not qualify for financing.
Light green is allocated to projects and solutions that are environmentally friendly but do not by themselves represent or contribute to the long-term vision.