Otkritie Bank becomes the first bank in Russia to adopt the Equator Principles

Moscow, 15 April 2013

On April 15, 2013 Otkritie Bank (OJSC) became the first Russian bank to join the Equator Principles Association. By adopting the Principles, Otkritie Bank has declared its commitment to sustainable finance and its readiness to take into account social and environmental considerations in major project financing.

The Equator Principles are a credit risk management framework for identifying, assessing, and managing environmental and social risk in project finance. The principles are adopted voluntarily by financial institutions and are applied where total project capital costs exceed US$10 million. The Principles are based on the International Finance Corporation’s (IFC) Performance Standards on Environmental and Social Sustainability, and on the World Bank Group’s Environmental, Health and Safety Guidelines.

At present, 78 banks, including ABN Amro, BNP Paribas, Barclays, Bank of America, Citigroup, Credit Suisse, HSBC, Societe General, and Unicredit have adopted the Equator Principles.

According to the Chairman of the Board of Otkritie Bank, Alexey Gonus, collaboration between the Bank and corporate clients in this area has a positive impact on the reputation of all concerned. "Worldwide, there is increasing attention on businesses’ social responsibility. This being the case, our acceptance of the Equator Principles will, first and foremost, help to show that the words "social responsibility" and "sustainable future" have real meaning for us and our customers."

Joining the Equator Principles is an important step in the process of developing a comprehensive environmental and social risk management system for the Bank’s operations, which will further complement existing credit policy and sustainable funding practices.

"The adoption of the Equator Principles by Otkritie Bank is an important signal that environmental and social standards are becoming a differentiating factor in how financial institutions see their business,” said Tomasz Telma, IFC's Director for Europe and Central Asia. “Otkritie is the first bank in Russia to adopt these global principles for project finance.  We look forward to the bank applying the Equator Principles in practice, and to other banks following its lead".

"By adopting the Equator Principles, we are not only improving our system of risk management but also inviting our customers to share values ​​that are important to us, and which are essential for further development of our society,” said Deputy Chairman of the Board of Otkritie Bank, Anatoly Predtechensky. "When making project finance decisions, guided by the Principles, we literally invest in the future in which our children and their children will live. By taking responsible decisions today, we have a real opportunity to make the future more predictable."

About Otkritie Bank

Otkritie Bank is a universal commercial bank which offers its customers a range of traditional banking products, and investment, retirement and insurance services. The Bank was formed through the merger of four banks under the Otkritie brand, making it one of the top 30 Russian banks in terms of assets.

As of January 1, 2013, the Bank's assets totaled RUB 187.6 billion.

The Bank has "B/B" international long-term and short-term credit ratings from Standard & Poor's with a Stable outlook, and a long-term "B" rating from Fitch with a Rating Watch Positive outlook.

Otkritie Bank operates in more than 30 regions throughout Russia and has a network of about 300 offices in more than 100 cities.

The Bank employs more than 6,000 people and serves 1.5 million customers.

Today, the Bank is one of the leading banks servicing private customers in the North West and Ural regions of Russia.

The Bank’s main shareholders are: Otkritie Financial Corporation, Deposit Insurance Agency, and International Finance Corporation (IFC) which is part of the World Bank Group and invests in promising companies around the world.

We acknowledge the role of IFC in decision to adopt the Equator Principles as well as its important mission as the largest global development institution to help developing countries achieve sustainable growth by financing investment, mobilizing capital in international financial markets, and providing advisory services to businesses and governments, and therefore leveraging the power of the private sector to create jobs, spark innovation, and tackle the world’s most pressing development challenges.

For more information www.openbank.ru