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Swift and ICC bid to create industry standard for ESG due diligence

Swift and ICC bid to create industry standard for ESG due diligence

Swift's KYC Registry has become the first market utility to embed the International Chamber of Commerce’s (ICC) Sustainable Trade Finance Guidelines, making it easier for financial institutions to identify environmental, social and governance (ESG) risks in their supply chains.

Under the initiative, corporates with multiple banking partners will no longer have to provide ESG information in differing formats through bilateral exchanges. Instead, the inclusion of the ICC’s guidelines on Swift’s KYC Registry provides an industry standard that means corporates will only need to complete and update a single form that they can then share with their banking partners.

Bart Claeys, head of data and analytics products strategy at Swift, says: “Never before have environmental and sustainability practices had a more significant bearing on the financial decisions made by consumers, investors, corporates and financial institutions alike. This has led to a huge increase in demand for ESG due diligence which has, due to a lack of standardisation, been difficult to provide.”

Established in 2014, Swift’s KYC Registry encompasses more than 6,000 institutions, who use the platform to both publish their KYC data and receive information from their correspondents. The Registry was extended to Swift’s corporate customers in late 2019 in an effort to simplify KYC data exchange between banks and corporates.

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