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Should Sustainability-driven Payment Innovations be Part of Treasury’s ESG Toolkit?

As the goal to achieve net zero continues, corporate treasurers are looking beyond making their supply chains more sustainable – they are also seeking sustainability-driven innovations in other areas such as payments and collections. Here, we examine the latest developments in sustainability and the challenges facing treasurers in successfully adopting them.

The Covid-19 pandemic turbocharged sentiment towards environmental issues globally. Research[1] found that, following the pandemic, 85% of consumers are willing to take personal action to combat environmental and sustainability challenges, while 58% are now more mindful of their impact on the environment than they were before March 2020.

From a corporate treasury perspective, sustainability is increasingly important in recent years. And banks have helped to support this burgeoning focus through initiatives including green bonds and investment funds, innovations in cash management, and supply chain solutions such as sustainable financing programmes.

The focus on moving towards net-zero goals has also intensified in recent years among corporates and their treasury functions. This includes the need to understand, measure, and reduce greenhouse gas (GHG) emissions falling under the banners of Scope 1, 2 and 3 according to the GHG Protocol (see fig. 1) – as a means to honour the 2015 Paris Agreement.