OCBC Bank and Sunway REIT to collaborate on sustainable finance initiative
SunREIT Unrated Bond Berhad (SUB) has mandated OCBC Bank (Malaysia) Berhad (OCBC Bank) as the Sustainability Structuring Coordinator of an Unrated Medium Term Notes Programme of up to RM10.0 billion in nominal value (Programme). SUB is a special purpose vehicle incorporated for fundraising on behalf of Sunway Real Estate Investment Trust (Sunway REIT). Sunway REIT is one of the largest diversified real estate investment trusts in Malaysia, with a portfolio of 18 strategically located assets across award-winning integrated townships in key locations within the Klang Valley, Penang and Perak. Sunway REIT and its Sponsor, Sunway Berhad, a leading Malaysian conglomerate with core interests in property, construction, hospitality, retail, education and healthcare, are strong advocates of The United Nations Sustainable Development Goals (UNSDG) in advancing the sustainability agenda across the Sunway Group.
As part of its role, OCBC Bank will review the alignment of Sunway REIT’s overall sustainability agenda, encompassing its Environmental, Social and Governance (ESG) initiatives in accordance with sustainable financing principles developed by capital market regulators such as the ASEAN Capital Markets Forum (ACMF) and the International Capital Market Association (ICMA). The culmination of these efforts is to facilitate the issuance of debt securities under the existing Programme, which will be benchmarked against internationally-recognised sustainable finance standards.
Ms Tan Ai Chin, Managing Director, Senior Banker Client Coverage and Head of Investment Banking, OCBC Bank, said: "We are honoured to have been given the opportunity to helm Sunway REIT’s maiden venture into the sphere of sustainable financing. As a financial institution that places tremendous emphasis on advancing ESG best practices both within our Group as well as amongst our business partners, OCBC Bank is honoured to be able to form a strategic partnership with the Sunway Group, who share the same deeprooted values that we in OCBC Group uphold strongly.
“Together, we hope to be able to jointly spearhead further development of the domestic sustainable financing market by introducing market-defining innovative financial instruments such as sustainability-linked bonds. This mandate further reinforces OCBC Group’s leadership position in sustainable finance and we are glad to note that OCBC was ranked the top Mandated Lead Arranger in the Bloomberg Asia Pacific Sustainability-Linked Loan league tables in 2020.”
Commenting on the Sunway REIT’s sustainability journey, Chief Executive Officer of Sunway REIT Management Sdn Bhd, Dato’ Jeffrey Ng shared: “Sustainability is ingrained into Sunway REIT’s business practices long before sustainable development rose to its current prominence in Malaysia. Sustainability practices have since been in Sunway REIT's DNA, conscientiously embedded in our value creation journey to all our stakeholders, supported by our sustainability framework in accordance to the 17 United Nations Sustainable Development Goals.”
Dato’ Jeffrey Ng also commented, “Sunway REIT has once again demonstrated an exemplary capital management track record through the initiation of a proposed SustainabilityLinked Bond (SLB) issuance with the strategic partnership alongside OCBC Bank. Sunway REIT is proud to be the first Malaysian REIT to integrate ESG factors into its capital management strategy and this is expected to further strengthen Sunway REIT’s ability to access to diverse sources of funds while contributing positively to the development of sustainable finance in the domestic capital market.”
The formalisation of the mandate between OCBC Bank and Sunway REIT marks yet another milestone in the Malaysian capital market towards enhancing the effort to mainstream sustainable finance by harmonising corporate ESG initiatives with corresponding sustainable finance principles.