UOB Malaysia is teaming up with Syarikat Jaminan Pembiayaan Perniagaan Malaysia (SJPP) in order to introduce the U-Green Financing program, which will aim to support SMEs in prioritizing sustainability.
The banking institution has reportedly allocated RM 1 billion for this initiative, and SJPP will be guaranteeing up to 80% of the loans via its PEMULIH Government Guarantee Scheme (PGGS).
UOB Malaysia is notably the first banking institution to team up with SJPP on a green financing program.
U-Green Financing is currently available to qualified SMEs and mid-sized firms from all industries interested in contributing to “smart” sustainable cities.
Firms will also be eligible should they want to develop or construct green buildings, carry out green trade, or make contributions to a circular economy.
Open to current UOB Malaysia clients and those new to the bank, the facilities are presently available in the form of term loans, overdraft facilities as well as trade financing.
In addition to offering financing, UOB Malaysia will also be working with the Malaysian Research Accelerator for Technology and Innovation (MRANTI) to form an ESG workshop series to provide SMEs with knowledge and key insights to work on their ESG strategy.
Via the workshops, SMEs will benefit from a program co-developed by MRANTI and its qualified training providers.
Ng Wei Wei, Chief Executive Officer of UOB Malaysia, said:
“UOB Malaysia is proud to enter into this synergistic partnership with SJPP and MRANTI, which is highly complementary and crucial in supporting SMEs to adopt ESG practices. While the MRANTI workshop will assist SMEs in acquiring the necessary knowledge to embrace ESG, our partnership with SJPP will provide the financing support to help them kick-start their sustainability journey.”
Ng Wei Wei added:
“We are honored to be the first bank to partner SJPP to launch a green financing programme for SMEs. By making green financing more accessible, we hope to encourage SMEs to adopt sustainable business practices. This will boost their ESG profile, especially if they are keen to participate and compete in the global value chain.”
Apart from U-Green Financing, UOB Malaysia is also “a participating financial institution for Bank Negara Malaysia’s Low Carbon Transition Facility, as well as the High Technology and Green Facility.”
Chen Yin Heng, Principal Officer of SJPP, stated that the proposed collaboration is in line or consistent with the goal to achieve net-zero emissions by 2050.
“SJPP, via its guarantee schemes, is committed to supporting the government’s effort to boost economic growth, especially within the SME sector. Many strategic initiatives and policies have been put in place with the aim to spur and develop business opportunities for this sector.”
Chen Yin Heng added:
“We hope that U-Green Financing will encourage more SMEs and the mid-sized corporates to start adopting ESG practices and reduce their carbon footprints. Additionally, we are also pleased that financial institutions like UOB Malaysia and organizations like MRANTI are taking the step forward and drawing on their synergistic strengths to further support this noble aspiration.”