Sumitomo Mitsui signals it may curb coal-fired power financing

bloomberg.com Company,  International 2018-05-17 16:15:00

Japan's Sumitomo Mitsui Financial Group Inc. has signaled it may rethink its financing of coal-fired power projects, a small step for the nation's banking industry, which lags global rivals shifting away from one of the most-polluting fuels.


The Tokyo-based bank indicated this week that it may become the first major Japanese bank to tighten its stance on such funding. "Coal-fired power generation is relatively low cost and has a big impact on climate change, so we are considering to make our financing policy stricter." President Takeshi Kunibe expressed on May 14.


Japanese firms have lagged efforts across global finance to align their businesses with climate change goals. Sumitomo Mitsui and its two main domestic rivals remain among the world's biggest funders of coal power projects, according to transparency advocacy group BankTrack, even as a growing number of global lenders move away from the practice.


HSBC Holdings Plc said last month it will stop funding new power plants using the fossil fuel, joining similar pledges by Societe Generale SA and Deutsche Bank AG.


Kunibe said the bank's credit policy already states that it won't finance projects that carry "the risk of a significant negative impact" on the environment.


His remarks come after Japan's Dai-Ichi Life Insurance Co. said last week that it won't provide financing for overseas coal works. That marked the first time a Japanese financial institution has announced such a policy, according to environmental groups including Greenpeace Japan.


Japanese banks have been faulted by groups including 350.org and Kyoto-based Kiko Network for their support for coal-fired power projects, especially ones in developing countries. Sumitomo Mitsui's main lending unit was ranked fifth among lenders to coal plant developers globally, according to BankTrack. Mizuho Financial Group Inc. was top on the list and Mitsubishi UFJ Financial Group Inc. was second.


MUFG's main lending and trust banking arms will make decisions on financing "following recognition of both the local and the international circumstances surrounding coal-fired power generation." Japan's biggest bank said in a statement on May 15.


Still, Chief Executive Officer Nobuyuki Hirano said on the same day that coal retains a role in power generation worldwide. "There is still demand for coal power and it is a mission of a financial institution to address such needs." he said during an earnings briefing.


Mizuho is "aware that environmental issues are becoming more important socially," President Tatsufumi Sakai said. "We will take measures taking into account what's important for Japan's energy policy."


(Writing by Becky Du  Editing by Tammy Yang)
For any questions, please contact us by inqury@fwenergy.com or +86-351-7219322.

Share this article
Connect with us

Editors Recommendations

1 China Coal Daily Track (Oct 19) 2018-10-19

Thermal coal Domestic market Production area In Yuyang district, Yulin city, Shaanxi province, good sales driven coal prices up by 10 yuan/t at some mines; in Shenmu and Fugu, pri

2 Exxon Mobil signs framework agreement to supply LNG to Zhejiang Energy for 20 years 2018-10-19

Exxon Mobil Corp said on October 18 it signed a framework agreement for a liquefied natural gas (LNG) supply deal with Zhejiang Provincial Energy Group, the Chinese company's first long-term supply de

3 China Sep daily steel output reaches a year high, spurred by bumper profit 2018-10-19

In September, China's daily steel output hit a new high of this year, according to data from the National Bureau of Statistics on October 19, as steelmakers were stepping up production to chase bumper

4 Will China's strong pickup of steel market extend into Q4? 2018-10-19

China's steel prices have reached a new high since 2011 thanks to years-long capacity cut efforts, which, however, also arouses concerns whether the sizzling market could extend into the fourth quarte

5 Market players alerted to rapid increase in Chinese thermal coal market 2018-10-19

Following a consecutive price hike of thermal coal since the National Day holiday ended October 8, Chinese market players have been alerted to the possible risk in the near future. The Fe

6 China's natural gas production keeps strength in Sep 2018-10-19

China produced 12.2 billion cubic meters (cu m) of natural gas in September, rising by 8.5% from the preceding year, showed the latest data from the National Bureau of Statistics (NBS). T

7 Chinese thermal coal offer prices stable despite upbeat market sentiment 2018-10-19

Chinese coal traders almost held their offer prices steady on October 18 amid less-than-expected buying interest from utilities. However, most traders still showed bullish expectations over the future

8 China's import coal market still beset by lukewarm demand 2018-10-19

China's import thermal coal market was still beset by lukewarm appetite from power producers who have been adopting high-inventory strategy this year, and continued import curbs also soured their buyi

9 China coal output growth accelerates in Sep amid rising prices 2018-10-19

China's raw coal output grew at a faster pace compared with the year-ago level in September, official data showed, as miners ramped up production spurred by rallying prices alongside utilities' pre-wi

10 Mills in China's top steel city boost output despite winter ban start 2018-10-19

Steelmakers in Tangshan, China's biggest steel producing city, are boosting output as local officials have failed to issue precise orders on output curbs even though the city's winter pollution restri

Most Read Articles

1 Ganqimaodu Jan-Aug coking coal imports at 26.56% of China's total 2018-10-08

Ganqimaodu border crossing in China's Inner Mongolia imported 11.59 million tonnes of coking coal from the neighboring Mongolia over January-August this year, falling 1.76% from the year-ago level but

2 Continued import curbs and short supply underpin China coal prices 2018-10-11

China's port thermal coal prices were well propped up by persistently tight controls on imports alongside production constraints at mines for environmental clear-up. Relevant government d

3 China spot thermal coal prices close to 650 yuan/t; import curbs likely to remain 2018-10-09

China's thermal coal market moved steadily upward after the weeklong National Day Holiday, with many spot coal traders elbowing up offer prices, pushing up spot price of 5500 Kcal/kg NAR thermal coal

4 QHD port stocks fall to half-yr low; bullishness shines in Chinese market 2018-10-11

Coal stocks have tumbled drastically to below 5 million tonnes at northern China's Qinhuangdao port recently, paving the way for a likely coal price rise in the future. Eyeing such

5 Shanxi to cut coking capacity, coke output to cut toxic emission 2018-10-10

Shanxi province, a major coal mining hub in northern China, vowed to cut coking capacity and annual coke output, according to a government statement on October 9, in line with a long-term drive to red

6 China's QHD port remains irreplaceable to coal shipment 2018-10-11

China's Qinhuangdao port, as a barometer of thermal coal market and stabilizer of coal prices, is proven irreplaceable to coal shipment, mainly a transfer center for cargoes from production areas to c

7 Mongolia Sep coal exports soar 55.38% on yr 2018-10-12

Mongolia exported 3.58 million tonnes of coal in September, soaring 55.38% on the year and 20.09% on the month, data from the National Statistics Office showed. In January-September, coal

8 China Sep coal imports decline as demand falls 2018-10-12

China imported 25.14 million tonnes of coal in September, falling 7.18% from the year prior and down 12.35% from August, showed data from the General Administration of Customs (GAC) on October 12.

9 India's coal import rises 35% to 21.1 mln T in Sep 2018-10-08

India's coal import increased substantially by 35% to 21.1 million tonnes in September, as against 15.61 million tonnes in the corresponding month previous fiscal. The rise in imports comes at a time

10 Peabody Energy to shut parts of Queensland mine after fire 2018-10-12

Coal miner Peabody Energy said on October 11 it intends to permanently seal the area where high methane levels have been concentrated after it reported fire in parts of its North Goonyella mine in Aus