Sustainable Trade Finance

Last Tuesday, on the 3rd of May, we hosted a webinar, exploring the global momentum driving sustainable trade finance. 

We want to thank our sponsor Climate-KIC Australia for making this event possible. We would also like to extend our thanks to our wonderful speakers, Adam Rowe, Executive Director, Head of Trade Finance from Commonwealth Bank of Australia, and Johan Henningsson, Head of Sustainability from the Swedish Export Credit Corporation.

Key takeaways:

  • There is little room for fossil based investment going forward. It will not be economical, or socially responsible, to hold on to the fossil based energy systems.
  • The Swedish Government has created 22 roadmaps within industries. These roadmaps have been industry led to underpin the transformation towards a fossil-free status within these industries. The Swedish Export Credit system also complements the transformation of Swedish industries to become climate neutral. 
  • Business models needs to be future-proofed. There is tangible risk that the banking and financial industry will go faster than other industries, leaving a portfolio of businesses that is not as ‘green’ as the banks may like.
  • A science based approach is absolutely key to be applied to sustainable trade finance. 
  • In 2021, 80-90% of world trade was transacted through trade finance. Enhanced trade structures will be core to companies ability to sustainably market Australian products and source sustainable products in international markets.

Please find the webinar recording below:

Thank you to our speakers…

Johan Henningsson – Head of Sustainability – Swedish Export Credit Corporation

Johan Henningsson

Johan Henningsson has more than 16 years of experience of financial issues within the banking sector, private enterprise and as a management consultant in which he has held leading positions. Before joining SEK Financial Advisors Johan worked as Head of Corporate Sales in Sweden and Finland for ABN-Amro Bank. Prior to that, he was responsible for the business area Treasury Management at N&G Financial Management AB. Furthermore, Johan has been Manager for the internal bank at Modo AB and has thorough experience of active currency and interest rate risk management from ABB Treasury Center.

During a large part of his career Johan has worked as manager and spent much time with process and organizational development of financial operations. He has carried out a large number of change and efficiency projects, both of complex and business crucial nature, such as working capital management. He has in-depth knowledge working as a workshop manager and has also acted as a sales person and buyer of complex bank and financial services. In addition, Johan is researching within the areas of Corporate Social Responsibility (CSR) and steering of intangible resources for his doctorate.

Adam Rowe – Executive Director, Head of Trade Finance, Commodities, Trade and Carbon –  Commonwealth Bank of Australia

Adam is Executive Director, Head of Trade Finance, Commodities, Trade and Carbon at CBA focusing on the provision of trade, commodity and supply chain finance and working capital solutions to institutional and global market clients.  As a senior member of the team, he leads the provision to CBA’s customers of financial and risk management solutions to support their domestic and global supply chains and fund their working capital.

He joined CBA in 2017 in Hong Kong as Head of Structured Trade after 10 years with Rabobank in the UK, the Netherlands and Australia. He has worked in the trade and commodity finance sector for over 20 years across a number of international institutions after initially starting his career as a as a legal advisor for ABN AMRO in 2000.

CBA was recently the first Australian bank to successfully implement a syndicated borrowing base financing structure linked to measurable sustainability performance targets (SPTs). Through this activity CBA is assisting the drive towards sustainable outcomes for the entire Australian grain industry.  CBA worked closely with its client to support its global sustainability strategy which is designed to safeguard people and communities, protect the environment and ensure all of its food and feed products meet the highest standards.

Moderator for webinar

Bill Cole- Partner, International Trade

Partner, International Trade

Bill is the moderator for this webinar. He is a Partner at BDO specialising in International Trade. Skilled in all aspects of trans-national commerce, Bill has particularly strong skills in the analysis of border regulation as it affects business models and cost outcomes. Drawing on his experience in all trade related sectors, Bill has delivered outcomes that have reduced import duty and GST, provided certainty to business via successful submissions to government on valuation and Free Trade Agreement status and successfully conducted litigation to confirm the application of import concessions to the energy sector. Bill has a strong professional brand with both industry and government through his personal network of bureaucrats and the business community and his participation in forums such as the Australian Border Force industry engagement group, ATO Excise reference group and the Law Council of Australia customs committee.

Marian Schoen, National Director

EU-Australia Climate Business Network

The European Australia Climate Business Network is an initiative of the European Commission to foster engagement between European and Australian peak bodies across a wide range of industry sectors, policymakers and companies.

Industry organisations, associations and companies from the following sectors will comprise the Network: renewable energy; energy efficiency, sustainable building/construction; sustainable infrastructure and mobility, green cooling and refrigeration, sustainable agriculture and food production, waste management, as well as banking and investment, insurance and risk management, and green certification schemes.

The Network provides a platform for bi-lateral exchanges and collaborations, the sharing of industry and policy experience in implementing the goals of the Paris Agreement, as well as the development of trade and investments links between Europe and Australia in the context of the FTA negotiations.

Climate KIC Australia, with its linkages to the EU through its sister organization EIT Climate KIC, is the national delivery partner for the Network. Climate KIC is a knowledge and innovation community (KIC) which works with public and private partners to catalyse system level climate action.