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PRESS RELEASE April 16, 2018

World Bank Issues Its First Hong Kong Dollar Green Bond

The World Bank (International Bank for Reconstruction and Development, IBRD, rated Aaa/AAA), priced its first ever green bond denominated in Hong Kong dollars (HKD) and the first benchmark sized green bond issued by a supranational issuer in Hong Kong SAR, China. HSBC Bank plc and Société Générale were the lead managers for this green bond transaction.

The HKD 1 billion 2-year green bond offers a coupon of 2.14% per annum with an April 23, 2020 maturity date and has an issue price of 100%.  

“We are extremely pleased to issue our first Hong Kong dollars green bond. The bond was issued based on demand from domestic investors interested in investing in the World Bank’s first green Hong Kong dollar (HKD) denominated bond.  HKD is the 19th currency for World Bank green bonds. This transaction also shows that demand for green bonds continues to grow, especially for safe and liquid instruments, from a broadening investor base. Investors, indeed, desire to connect their investments to development solutions that address climate change and make a difference for people around the globe,” said Arunma Oteh, World Bank Vice President and Treasurer.

"The Hong Kong Special Administrative Region Government is committed to promoting green finance and fostering a robust green bond market in Hong Kong. We welcome the World Bank's issuance of green bond in Hong Kong dollars in Hong Kong. The HKMA Infrastructure Financing Facilitation Office (IFFO) has been engaging with the World Bank on various fronts, and this issuance clearly demonstrates the growing green investors base in Hong Kong as well as our strengths as a major green finance hub in the region"  said James Lau, Secretary for Financial Services and the Treasury, Hong Kong.

With this latest transaction, the World Bank has issued more than 135 green bonds in 19 currencies, totaling almost USD 10.5 billion equivalent since its inaugural issue in 2008. World Bank Green Bonds offer investors an opportunity to support environmental solutions through a bond product that benefits from the triple-A credit strength of the World Bank. World Bank Green Bonds help support the financing of projects in member countries that meet specific criteria for low carbon and climate resilient growth, seeking to mitigate climate change or help affected people adapt to it. The types of eligible projects include renewable energy installations, energy efficiency projects, and new technologies in waste management and agriculture that reduce greenhouse gas emissions and help finance the transition to a low carbon economy. They also include financing for forest and watershed management and infrastructure to prevent climate-related flood damage and build climate resilience.


Transaction Summary

Issuer: World Bank (International Bank for Reconstruction and Development, IBRD)
Issuer rating: Aaa/AAA
Amount: HKD 1 billion
Settlement date: April 23, 2018
Maturity date: April 23, 2020
Issue price: 100%
Coupon: 2.14% per annum
Denomination: HKD 1,000,000 
Clearing system: Euroclear
Lead manager: HSBC Bank plc and Société Générale
ISIN: XS1811022505


Joint lead manager quotes

"Congratulations to the World Bank for printing this landmark HKD 1 billion 2-year green bond transaction. Asia has been one of the driving forces behind green bond issuance in recent years and we are delighted that the Hong Kong Dollar market has displayed its appetite for the product from a high-grade issuer such as the World Bank. HSBC was delighted to have arranged this transaction,” said Jean-Marc Mercier, Global Co-Head of Debt Capital Markets at HSBC

“Société Générale is very proud to have joint-lead-managed World Bank’s inaugural syndicated HKD-denominated green bond. This transaction not only reinforces World Bank’s already strong footprint in the sustainability bond market, but thanks to this new currency added to World Bank’s green and sustainability bond offerings, also gives an additional investor base the opportunity to make a climate-positive investment on one of the world’s highest quality signatures,” said Stéphane Marciel, Head of Sustainable Bonds, Debt Capital Markets.


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: