A new study creates transparency on the status of the Swiss financial centre’s voluntary commitments to net zero for the first time: There is still a long way to go, but the proportion of financing solutions, assets and insurance premiums committed to the net-zero target is growing.
Switzerland has set itself the goal of reducing its greenhouse gas emissions to net zero by 2050. All sectors of the economy need to contribute actively to achieving that goal. Although the financial sector makes only a minor contribution to direct greenhouse gas emissions, financial institutions play a key role in funding the economy’s climate transition.
One important coalition in the financial sector is the Glasgow Financial Alliance for Net Zero (GFANZ). It brings various net zero alliances together under one umbrella and coordinates them to achieve the goals of the Paris Agreement. Such alliances have evolved into an important way for the financial industry to play its part in achieving global climate goals. When joining, financial institutions commit to setting specific (interim) targets to achieve climate neutrality and draw up a strategy to deliver on them. This also includes reporting annually on the progress made.
The Asset Management Association Switzerland (AMAS), Swiss Bankers Association (SBA), Swiss Insurance Association (SIA) and Swiss Sustainable Finance (SSF) – the leading associations representing the Swiss financial centre – are fully behind the net zero goal. AMAS, the SBA and the SIA are also supporting institutions of the relevant GFANZ net zero alliances, and assist their members in their progress towards net zero.
Well placed, but long way to go
The study shows that the Swiss financial centre is already well positioned by international standards when it comes to formulating commitments. At the same time, it is clear that there is still much to be done in terms of concrete implementation, as well as the transparency and comparability of targets and progress. The financial centre can continue to provide effective support for the transition in the form of appropriate financing, asset management and insurance solutions. It is nonetheless reliant on the concrete decarbonisation efforts of all sectors of the economy.
This study is also intended as the starting point for a longer journey. The proportion of financing solutions, assets and insurance premiums tied to net zero has grown over recent months, but further progress needs to be made and communicated transparently going forward.
You can download the study here.