China, Singapore Launching Green Finance Taskforce

MAS, PBOC partnership is just one of a number of new sustainability-focused initiatives announced between the two countries.

The Monetary Authority of Singapore (MAS) has announced new initiatives to expand green finance cooperation and deepen its capital market linkages with China, including the establishment of a taskforce with the People’s Bank of China (PBOC) to facilitate public-private sector exchanges and mobilise private investment towards sustainable development.

The taskforce will explore collaboration in areas such as standards and definitions, green and transition financing solutions, data and technology enablers to catalyse green financing flows.

“The launch of the Green Finance Taskforce is very timely, as finance plays a key role in catalysing our transition to a more sustainable future,” said MAS Deputy Managing Director Leong Sing Chiong. “MAS will continue to work closely with our central bank and regulatory counterparts in China to deepen our financial cooperation and unlock new growth drivers for our economies.”

Meanwhile, the Singapore Exchange (SGX) and the Shenzhen Stock Exchange (SZSE) have said they will welcome the first three participating ETFs under their ETF Product Link by year-end.

The ETF Product link was established by an MOU signed in December 2021, and will enable Singaporean and Chinese investors to use feeder ETFs listed locally to access each other’s exchanges. MAS later issued guidance on the requirements applicable to Singapore-constituted feeder ETFs which intend to participate in the Shenzhen ETF Product Link.

UOB Asset Management and Ping An Fund Management recently announced plans to list a ChiNext ETF on SGX on 14 November. Another ETF will be launched under a collaboration between China Southern Asset Management and CSOP Asset Management Singapore.

SGX, the Shanghai Stock Exchange (SSE) and SZSE are also planning to jointly launch a Low Carbon Index Family by year-end, which will serve as a benchmark for fund managers to launch new green funds focused on China, ASEAN and other Asian countries. The index family is intended to help raise investor interest in green investment opportunities in the region and channel capital towards leading sustainable firms.

Singapore and China also plan to work together to gradually and safely restore weekly flights between the two countries to pre-Covid-19 levels; launch a new blockchain-based tracking service for container movements between Singapore and Chinese ports by end-2022; and deepen cooperation on innovation and research projects.

The initiatives were announced at the Joint Council for Bilateral Cooperation, which returned to an in-person format this week after two years of teleconferencing.

Singapore’s Deputy Prime Minister Heng Swee Keat co-chaired the meeting with Chinese Vice-Premier Han Zheng, the senior-most Chinese leader to visit Singapore since the onset of the pandemic.

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