Sy-blings’ BDO accused of continuing coal financing despite non-coal policy

Environmental group Withdraw from Coal: End Fossil Fuels (WFC-ECC) has called on BDO to cease its fossil gas financing and uphold its no coal policy after a report revealed the bank’s continued funding of dirty energy projects.

The group released its 2023 Fossil Fuel Divestment Scorecard on April 18, a day before BDO’s annual shareholders’ meeting, which identified BDO as the bank with the most exposure to fossil gas.

WFC-ECC has criticized BDO for funding large fossil gas deals despite LNG expansion plans being incompatible with climate goals, according to reports from Climate Analytics and the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change.

“BDO’s huge stakes in fossil gas undermine climate actions,” said Avril de Torres, deputy executive director of Center for Energy, Ecology, and Development, a convenor of WFC-ECC.

BDO was the top underwriter of the SMC Global Power bond that funded Excellent Energy Resources Inc. (EERI) and Mariveles Power Generation Corporation (MPGC).

WFC-ECC reports that up to $439.15 million of the bond will finance EERI, with BDO funding 25% of it, or

$ 107.16 million.

WFC-ECC has also condemned BDO for continuing to finance coal projects despite its no coal policy.

The group claims that BDO has been one of the largest local funders of coal since 2009, with four transactions in 2022, despite its “no coal” pronouncement in 2021. “This means BDO is among the biggest contributors to the worsening climate emergency and the suffering of Filipinos from pollution resulting from coal plant operations and the expensive electricity they produce,” said San Carlos Bishop Gerry Alminaza, Convenor of WFC-EFF.

The group has called on BDO to divest from fossil fuels and instead invest in a renewable energy future.

“How can we then be assured of any returns from these types of investments in fossil fuel when these projects are being delayed and are facing mounting opposition from those who are demanding clean and affordable electricity and an urgent and just transition towards renewables?” questioned Bishop Alminaza.

BSP to allow pre-termination of peso NDFs

The Bangko Sentral ng Pilipinas (BSP), is set to introduce amendments to its foreign exchange (FX) regulations, allowing for the pre-termination of peso non-deliverable forwards (NDFs).