Canada hires HSBC and TD for its debut green bond sale

The HSBC building in Toronto. - File pic)

TORONTO: Canada hired HSBC Holdings Plc and Toronto-Dominion Bank for its inaugural sale of green bonds, joining other nations including the United Kingdom and Germany in pursuing environmentally-friendly debt issuance.

The banks will advise on the design of Canada’s green bond framework, assist in the development of an ongoing programme and support the debut issuance, according to statements released recently.

The company may seek to raise C$5bil (US$4.1bil or RM16.8bil) through the sale, the government said in April. This comes as environmental, social and governance (ESG) bonds in Canadian dollars are about to hit an annual record with more than six months to go. Government green bond issuance has acted as a catalyst for other borrowers to follow suit.

“Based on what we’ve seen in other regions of the world, where we acted in a similar role, it tends to be a positive development on the overall market, ” Valerie Lemieux, head of public sector Canada, global banking and markets at HSBC Bank Canada said in a telephone interview. “It creates a momentum.”

HSBC has been involved in arranging inaugural sovereign green bond programmes for the UK, Poland, the Netherlands, Chile, South Korea and Hong Kong. Telus Corp, a longstanding issuer of Canadian dollar debt, released a framework to potentially sell the country’s first sustainability-linked bonds.

Sales of ESG bonds in Canada so far this year reached at least C$9.43bil (RM31.84bil), according to data compiled by Bloomberg. That’s twice the amount sold in the comparable period a year earlier, and less than C$100mil (RM338.7mil) shy of the annual record reached in 2019. Canada has been adding mechanisms to deliver on its commitment to cut greenhouse gas emissions 40% to 45% below 2005 output by 2030. ― Bloomberg

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