01 October 2019



Renewable energy financing to also incentivise micro SMEs towards sustainable growth, feeding into CIMB Group’s sustainability commitment


Kuala Lumpur: CIMB Bank Berhad (‘the bank” or “CIMB”) today launched its renewable energy financing for micro and small SMEs in Malaysia, as part of its RM15-billion SME allocation for 2019 – 2020 and CIMB Group’s sustainability commitment. The programme was launched at CIMB’s The Cooler Earth Sustainability Summit, witnessed by YB Yeo Bee Yin, Minister of Energy, Science, Technology, Environment and Climate Change, in Kuala Lumpur. 


CIMB Bank has allocated RM100 million to the CIMB SME Renewable Energy Financing programme. One of the first initiatives under this programme is to provide smaller SMEs with 100% financing to cover the cost of solar photovoltaic (PV) systems and installation on their rooftops. The financing initiative offers packages from as low as RM20,000 and up to RM1 million, in support of the government’s Net Energy Metering (NEM) scheme. SMEs need to first obtain the NEM approval from SEDA, to be eligible for CIMB’s Renewable Energy Financing. The financing initiative provides a practical solution to enable even the smaller and micro SMEs to purchase solar PV systems to save on their electricity bills, and contribute to planet earth’s well-being.


Tengku Dato’ Sri Zafrul Aziz, Group CEO, CIMB Group said, “With the CIMB Renewable Energy Financing, we are pleased to be able to incorporate environmentally friendly policies into our commitment to the SME sector. Our planet is at a tipping point, from an environmental, economic and social (EES) perspective, and we must take action now. To that end, members of the banking and finance industry can and must leverage on our resources and network to catalyse real lasting change across these fronts, and to begin pursuing profits with a purpose.”


Apart from the SME Renewable Energy Financing, CIMB Group has also taken other steps to fulfill its commitment to Sustainability, a key pillar in its current growth strategy. These include launching its Group Sustainability Policy and Sustainable Financing Policy to guide decisions on operations and lending policies to ensure positive EES impact. Further, CIMB is one of 30 founding member banks and the only ASEAN banking group that helped draft the UNEP-FI’s Principles of Responsible Banking, currently supported by 130 signatory banks globally. On 30 September 2019, CIMB also announced that it had successfully priced its US$680 million SDG bond, the proceeds of which will be channeled to various impactful sectors that serve seven of UN’s Sustainable Development Goals (SDG’s) that CIMB Group has committed to.


“We live in extremely challenging times with issues such as climate change, water scarcity and increasing wealth inequality. We are engaging with key stakeholders because we believe we must, can and will solve all these issues. As a leading banking group in ASEAN, CIMB fully embraces its responsibility to effect change, and because we want ensure that 40, 50, 60 years from now, when we look back to today, we want to know that we did the right thing and stood on the right side on history,” continued Tengku Zafrul. 


On a related note, the two-day Cooler Earth Sustainability Summit, held on 1 – 2 October 2019, is CIMB's first-ever regional platform to raise awareness on social and environmental risks and opportunities within the context of business and finance in shaping a sustainable economy. It was organised in collaboration with knowledge partners, WWF and sustainability consultancy, Impacto. It gathered more than 1,000 business leaders, financiers, investors, policy-makers and regulators who engaged openly in a transparent and constructive forum aimed at catalyzing action from all stakeholders to begin or enhance their sustainability journey by embedding EES considerations in their strategies. By the end of day one, delegates had gained compelling insights and ideas on the role of business in catalysing sustainable development. There was also consensus on ‘the urgent need to mobilise action’ to respond to climate emergency and manage businesses' social and environmental impact better.

YB Yeo Bee Yin, Minister of Energy, Science, Technology, Environment and Climate Change (centre); Datuk Mohd Nasir Ahmad, Chairman, CIMB Group (left) and Tengku Dato’ Sri Zafrul Aziz, Group CEO, CIMB Group at the launch of the CIMB SME Renewable Energy Financing programme for micro and small SMEs in Malaysia, at CIMB’s The Cooler Earth Sustainability Summit.