ECB published an opinion on the mandate and tasks of the MNB related to environmental sustainability in the financial sector in Hungry (CON/2021/12). The Hungarian Ministry of Finance had requested this opinion from ECB on the draft law amending the "Law on MNB." One of the proposed amendments of the MNB mandate specifies that MNB shall support, as a secondary objective, the government’s policy related to environmental sustainability. In its opinion, ECB partially supports certain provisions of the draft law and welcomes the initiative of MNB to offset its carbon footprint as a complementary measure to the accomplishment of its other institutional environmental objectives.
MNB introduced a Green Preferential Capital Requirement Program in 2019. The program ensures that credit institutions receive a Pillar 2 capital requirement reduction on consumer loans serving energy efficient home purposes if consumers receive an interest rate subsidy. However, up to now banks have not incorporated the beneficial features of green mortgage loans into their lending standards and prices. According to the explanatory memorandum, as the current business models of banks do not incorporate the positive externalities relating to energy efficient mortgages, a central bank program that enables direct lending to retail clients would be needed. This could spur green residential real estate constructions and renovations, help renew the domestic residential real estate stock, and support reduction of greenhouse gas emissions. The program would also incentivize market participants to provide new green housing loans. The draft law also provides that, as instruments of its monetary policy, MNB will provide energy efficiency consumer loans and, in relation to this task, MNB will manage Hungarian forint accounts for consumers.
ECB supports the provision of energy efficiency loans, which is already a reality across EU and needs to be expanded. ECB understands the wish of the Hungarian authorities to reach an acceleration of this kind of lending in Hungary. However, the new task proposed to be conferred on MNB to provide energy efficiency loans directly to consumers to support green residential real estate developments is a task that can be more appropriately performed by private or state-owned credit institutions or development banks, rather than central banks. Given the substantial operational challenges of the mortgage lending business, this task would, in the absence of further means being granted to MNB, be disproportionate to the MNB’s financial and organizational capacity and could leave MNB vulnerable to substantial financial risks. The performance of this task would also entail reputational risks for MNB and would not fit smoothly into the institutional setup of MNB. The performance of this task would, therefore, be classified as a government, rather than a central banking, task and would have to be conducted by the State, rather than with central bank resources. In conclusion, ECB notes that central banks can independently decide on conducting operations with their monetary counterparts via regular instruments of monetary policy, which may support the government’s policy relating to environmental sustainability. However, the Hungarian authorities are strongly encouraged not to allocate to MNB the task of providing energy efficiency loans directly to consumers.
Related Link: Opinion (PDF)
Keywords: Europe, Hungary, Banking, Climate Change Risk, ESG, Regulatory Capital, Pillar 2, Credit Risk, Residential Real Estate, Opinion, Sustainable Finance, MNB, ECB
Dr. Denton provides industry leadership in the quantification of sustainability issues, climate risk, trade credit and emerging lending risks. His deep foundations in market and credit risk provide critical perspectives on how climate/sustainability risks can be measured, communicated and used to drive commercial opportunities, policy, strategy, and compliance. He supports corporate clients and financial institutions in leveraging Moody’s tools and capabilities to improve decision-making and compliance capabilities, with particular focus on the energy, agriculture and physical commodities industries.
Previous ArticleEBA Publishes Single Rulebook Q&A Updates for March 2021
The European Central Bank (ECB) is undertaking the integrated reporting framework (IReF) project to integrate statistical requirements for banks into a standardized reporting framework that would be applicable across the euro area and adopted by authorities in other EU member states.
The Basel Committee on Banking Supervision met, shortly after a gathering of the Group of Central Bank Governors and Heads of Supervision (GHOS), the oversight body of BCBS.
The International Organization of Securities Commissions (IOSCO) welcomed the work of the international audit and assurance standard setters—the International Auditing and Assurance Standards Board (IAASB)
The European Banking Authority (EBA) has been awarded the top European Standard for its environmental performance under the European Eco-Management and Audit Scheme (EMAS).
The Bank of England (BoE) published a Statistical Notice (2022/18), which informs that due to the Bank Holiday granted for Her Majesty Queen Elizabeth II’s State Funeral on Monday September 19, 2022.
The French Prudential Control and Resolution Authority (ACPR) announced that the European Banking Authority (EBA) has updated its filing rules and the implementation dates for certain modules of the EBA reporting framework 3.2.
The Australian Prudential Regulation Authority (APRA) announced reduction in the aggregate Committed Liquidity Facility (CLF) for authorized deposit-taking entities to ~USD 33 billion on September 01, 2022.
The China Banking and Insurance Regulatory Commission (CBIRC) published the administrative measures for internal control of wealth management companies, which come into force on the day of promulgation.
The Prudential Regulation Authority (PRA) proposed its approach to policy-making as it takes on wider rulemaking responsibilities under the Financial Services and Markets Bill.
The European Central Bank (ECB) published its opinion on the proposal for a regulation on harmonized rules on fair access to and use of data (Data Act).