The Bank of New Zealand (BNZ) has introduced a series of new low-rate green loans.
The bank joins a host of banks offering sustainable loans to agricultural customers, including ASB, Westpac and, more recently, ANZ.
The loans are designed to help companies invest in green technologies and help farmers invest in water efficiency, among other green businesses.
“Every day we hear from New Zealand business owners who want to grow their businesses and invest in initiatives to make their New Zealand businesses and communities more sustainable,” says Karna Luke, Head of Products and Services to BNZ customers.
“BNZ’s suite of sustainable lending initiatives is designed to deliver great results for our clients through access to lower cost finance,” he said.
The Reserve Bank of New Zealand (RBNZ) is offering banks access to its Funding for Loans Program (FLP), set up during the Covid-19 pandemic.
BNZ used the FLP last year to establish its Good to Grow program with the aim of helping clients navigate uncertain business conditions by helping them invest in their businesses at low interest rates.
Luke says the bank is “recharging and scaling” the Good to Grow program with $1.4 billion in funding from FLP.
“These funds aim to accelerate our clients’ green ambitions, from housing to renewable energy, including electric vehicles, as well as supporting the growth of Maori businesses and the New Army. of small and medium-sized enterprises.”
He says an example of this is the business loan for green purposes soon to be launched by the bank.
The loan is designed to support clients in their initiatives to invest in renewable energy, low-emission transport and “protecting a healthy ecosystem”.
Although BNZ already has several environment-related lending initiatives, it launched its Sustainable Farm Linked Loan (SLL) earlier this year.
The loan offers savings on interest charges to meet environmental and social goals, with farmers being able to choose from a range of options they want to tackle. However, the reduction of emissions is a non-negotiable condition of the loan.
With FLP funding available, these initiatives will focus on achieving positive environmental, social and governance-based outcomes for our customers and the communities our customers support.
“It’s about our customers, current and new to BNZ, who have ideas and ambitions – whether big or small, who are determined that their next investment will find a way to make their businesses, their homes and our communities more sustainable and resilient.
“We are ambitious that BNZ’s lower cost, sustainability-focused loans will be the catalyst that kick-starts New Zealanders’ big green ideas,” says Luke.