Responsible palm oil financing and investment



Many of the environmental problems caused by oil palm plantations can be avoided through the application of best management practices.

However, in many cases there are incentives for palm oil production that lead to the conversion of natural habitats, and misguided investments that support environmentally destructive forest conversion.
 / ©: naturepl.com/Juan Carlos Munoz / WWF
Aerial view of palm oil plantation on deforested land, Sabah, Borneo, Malaysia
© naturepl.com/Juan Carlos Munoz / WWF

WWF's Role

WWF helps financial institutions avoid negative environmental and social impacts of their lending and investment activities by:
  • Improving risk management, capacity and financial performance in high-impact sectors such as palm oil
  • Delivering innovation breakthroughs in sustainable financial products
  • Providing insights and data on key global trends

New Report

 / ©: WWF-MALAYSIA / MAZIDI ABD GHANI
Report Sustainable finance in Singapore, Malaysia and Indonesia: A review of financiers´ESG practices, Disclosure standards and Regulations
© WWF-MALAYSIA / MAZIDI ABD GHANI
Sustainable Finance in Singapore, Malaysia and Indonesia: A review of financiers´ESG practices, disclosure standards and regulations

The report finds an alarming gap between regional ASEAN financial institutions and the environmental, social and governance (ESG) standards adopted by their international counterparts.

It focuses on the extent to which these capital providers are considering sustainability in their financing and investment activities, and the adequacy of sustainability reporting requirements in light of existing disclosure levels on material environmental and social issues.

The risks presented by commercial logging and plantations for palm oil and pulp are adopted as a central case in the report supporting the call to action.

Press release

Practical Guide

 / ©: WWF
Cover for Environmental, Social and Governance Integration for Banks: A Guide to Starting Implementation
© WWF
Environmental, Social and Governance Integration for Banks: A Guide to Starting Implementation

This WWF guide explains how banks can go beyond reputation and risk management to embrace transformative change by adopting sustainable practices. 

It offers a structured approach to building an Environmental, Social and Governance (ESG) strategy and implementation framework that includes sector policies for high footprint sectors such as palm oil. 

The guide was developed partly in response to demand from banks in Asia who are important sources of finance for the palm oil supply chain. These banks wanted to have clearer guidance on what the ESG journey entailed and what was required from an organisational standpoint, both in terms of processes as well as human resources.

Investor Survey

 / ©: WWF
The Palm Oil Investor Review 2012 surveyed 35 key palm oil sector investors to assess how they are managing the challenges associated with sustainable palm oil and outlines the role they can play in moving the industry toward greater sustainability
© WWF
WWF’s Palm Oil Investor Review

This review outlines the role that investors can play to move the palm oil industry toward greater sustainability and how the Roundtable on Sustainable Palm Oil (RSPO) and WWF should support them.

It also summarizes findings from a first-of-its-kind survey of 35 key palm oil investors, examining their understanding of, and progress in dealing with the challenges related to palm oil and sustainability.

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