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They provide a framework for financial institutions to manage environmental and social issues related to projects they finance anywhere in the world and to all industry sectors, including mining, oil and gas, and forestry. The Equator Principles are based on IFC’s Performance Standards and apply to projects that exceed $10 million.

Financial institutions that have adopted the Equator Principles commit to implementing internal policies and processes consistent with the Equator Principles. At a project level, this means:

  • The financial institution screens the level of environmental and social risks and assigns a risk category.
  • The borrower completes an Environmental Assessment.
  • The borrower prepares an Action Plan that describes and prioritizes the actions needed to implement mitigation measures or corrective actions, and monitoring measures.
  • The borrower discloses impacts and consults with affected groups.
  • The borrower agrees to comply with the Action Plan and to report on compliance.

The Equator Principles were initially adopted by ten international banks in 2003 and are now applied by almost 70 project Finance Institutions from more than 25 countries in all regions of the world. These Finance Institutions operate in over 100 countries and represent more than 80 percent of project finance transactions. The Equator Principles have become the industry standard for managing environmental and social issues in project financing globally.

For more on the Equator Principles, see

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