>@Shirin Wheeler/EIB
©Shirin Wheeler/EIB

Towards a transparent market for impact investors

The EIB has joined 59 other partner institutions in being the first to sign the new Operating Principles for Impact Management. Launched in Washington D.C. at the IMF/World Bank Group Spring meetings, the Principles represent a new market standard developed by the International Finance Organisation (IFC) with the aim of bringing greater transparency, credibility, and discipline to the impact investing market – as well as to maximise social and environmental impact and better returns for investors.

EIB Vice-President Mc Dowell, who signed on behalf of the EIB, said: “Impact investing will help us to respond to the big social and environmental challenges that face us. We welcome the principles agreed today which ensure our joint efforts deliver and our investments hit their mark.”

The Principles reflect best practices across a range of public and private institutions. They integrate impact considerations into all phases of the investment lifecycle, and call for annual disclosure as to how signatories implement the Principles, including independent verification, which will ensure credibility to the adoption of the Principles. They also intend to address concerns about “impact-washing.”

The IFC estimates investor appetite for impact investment could today be as much as USD 26 trillion. This includes USD 5 trillion in private markets involving private equity, non-sovereign debt, and venture capital, and as much as USD 21 trillion in publicly traded stocks and bonds.