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PRESS RELEASE January 9, 2018

World Bank Sustainable Development Bond Raises Awareness for Women and Girls’ Empowerment

Washington, DC, January 9, 2018 – The World Bank issued a Sustainable Development Bond to raise awareness for how empowering women and girls is one of the most effective ways to accelerate economic development, reduce poverty and build sustainable societies around the world. The bond raised CAD1 billion from institutional investors in the Canadian dollar market.

Achieving gender equality is one of the 17 Sustainable Development Goals, and one of five key themes under Canada’s 2018 presidency of the Group of Seven (G7). It is central to the World Bank’s goals of ending extreme poverty and boosting shared prosperity in a sustainable manner.

Marking the World Bank’s first return to the Canadian dollar-denominated market in two years, the bond attracted remarkably strong participation from Canadian investors. In addition to offering the year’s first high quality opportunity in this market, the bond’s sustainable development and gender equality focus offered investors an attractive opportunity to align financial and social objectives. The bond was comfortably oversubscribed, with more than 40 investors placing orders for more than CAD1.2 billion.

Kristalina Georgieva, World Bank Chief Executive Officer, said: “We need US$7 trillion to achieve the Sustainable Development Goals—and we will not achieve them if we leave half our population behind. This is why the World Bank and Canada are committed to advancing gender equality and the empowerment of women. It’s not just the right thing to do—it’s the smart thing to do to ensure a better future for all.”

Arunma Oteh, World Bank Vice President and Treasurer, said: “Capital markets can transform society. Through World Bank bonds, we create the channels that raise funding for global priorities such as gender and climate change, and connect investors to positive development outcomes. I am particularly delighted that we have been able to build on Canada’s commitment to empowering women and girls, to launch the World Bank’s first sustainable development benchmark bond highlighting gender equality.”

Roger Beauchemin, President and Chief Executive Officer of Addenda Capital, said: “Addenda Capital has determined that the World Bank’s Sustainable Development Bonds are an excellent fit for our clients including our new Addenda Impact Fixed Income Fund. This bond reinforces our view that investors must look beyond green bond labels to identify opportunities for clients to have a positive social and environmental impacts while still generating competitive investment returns. With the World Bank’s sustainable development mandate, this bond will help support projects and programs that cover the key themes Canada has identified as priorities for its 2018 G7 Presidency, including advancing gender equality and women’s empowerment.”

BMO Capital Markets and Bank of America Merrill Lynch were joint lead managers for the bond.

Canada is a founding member of the World Bank. Since 1945, Canada and the World Bank have worked together, with other member governments, to finance projects, design policies, and deliver programs to end poverty and create a world based on the principles of sustainable development.

Investor Distribution

By Geography

By Investor Type



Asset Managers/Insurance/Pension Funds


Europe and Middle East


Banks/Bank Treasuries/Corporates




Central Banks/Official Institutions






Transaction Summary


World Bank (International Bank for Reconstruction and Development, IBRD)

Issuer rating:



CAD 1 billion

Settlement date:

January 17, 2018

Maturity date:

January 17, 2023

Issue price:





CAD 1,000 and multiples thereof


Luxembourg Stock Exchange

Joint Lead managers:

BMO Capital Markets, Bank of America Merrill Lynch

Joint Lead Manager Quotes

Kelsey Gunderson, Co-Head of Global Trading Products at BMO Capital Markets, said: “BMO is proud to be partnering with World Bank to raise awareness and inspire global change through this bond offering. As a recognized leader among global financial institutions for gender equality, ‎BMO shares the ambition of the World Bank and Canada to make meaningful progress on efforts to promote gender equality and the advancement of women.”

Suzanne Buchta, Global Head of ESG Fixed Income, Bank of America Merrill Lynch, said: “The World Bank has successfully seized the opportunity to issue a benchmark-sized bond in the Canadian market that highlights gender equality as a global development goal. The exceptional market response reflects a growing social awareness among the Canadian investor community, and highlights the World Bank’s dedication to engaging with investors on innovative capital market instruments that support sustainable development outcomes.”

About the World Bank

The World Bank (International Bank for Reconstruction and Development, IBRD), rated Aaa/AAA (Moody’s/S&P), is an international organization created in 1944 and the original member of the World Bank Group. It operates as a global development cooperative owned by 189 nations. It provides its members with financing, expertise and coordination services so they can achieve equitable and sustainable economic growth in their national economies and find effective solutions to pressing regional and global economic and environmental problems. The World Bank has two main goals: to end extreme poverty and promote shared prosperity. It seeks to achieve them primarily by providing loans, risk management products, and expertise on development-related disciplines to its borrowing member government clients in middle-income countries and other creditworthy countries, and by coordinating responses to regional and global challenges. It has been issuing sustainable development bonds in the international capital markets for over 70 years to fund its activities that achieve a positive impact. Information on World Bank bonds for investors is available on the World Bank Treasury website: