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Generali to underwrite more sustainable business and commit to green investments

22nd February 2018 - Author: Matt Sheehan

Assicurazioni Generali S.p.A. has announced an underwriting commitment to increase the percentage of their premium portfolio related to the renewable energy sector, as well as invest €3.5 billion in ‘green’ sectors by 2020 and gradually divest away from coal-related companies.

Generali logoGenerali intends to underwrite more business it classifies as sustainable by expanding its renewable energy sector portfolio and by increasingly offering green insurance products with environmental value to small commercial customers.

The Group’s new climate change strategy also includes plans to refrain from new investments in coal-related businesses, and will see Generali reduce their current €2 billion exposure to the coal sector by disposing of equity investments and eliminating bond investments by bringing them to maturity or divesting before maturity.

Generali, which is the third largest insurance company in the world, intends to implement its new investments through green bonds and green infrastructure, and will annually monitor its strategy’s effectiveness and adjust its objectives accordingly.

These announcements follow an adjustment period of several years, during which Generali have focused on becoming increasingly sustainable in order to tackle climate change and other significant global challenges.

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Regarding the new strategy, Generali Group’s Chief Executive Officer (CEO) Philippe Donnet stated: “Protecting the environment and adopting effective actions to tackle climate change are central issues for Assicurazioni Generali. With this action plan, which follows a series of initiatives undertaken in the last several years, the Company strengthens its leadership position as a responsible business, to contribute to a healthy, resilient, and sustainable society.”

Generali has outlined several criteria by which to define coal-related businesses, including companies that derive more than 30% of the revenues from coal, that produce over 30% of their energy via coal, that are actively involved in building new coal facilities, and mining companies that produce over 20 million tonnes of coal per year.

The Group will allow exceptions to its plan in countries whose economy and employment depend heavily on the coal sector, or which lack alternatives to coal-based energy production. However, it intends to pursue dialogue with issuers, clients, and other stakeholders in these countries in order to monitor their plans to reduce environmental impacts, strategies for transitioning to activities with low environmental impacts, and measures for protecting their community and citizens.

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