Credit Unions in Ukraine Intend to Finance Sustainable Development Initiatives
The USAID/World Council of Credit Unions’ (WOCCU) Credit for Agriculture Producers (CAP) Project and Worldwide Foundation for Credit Unions (WFCU) are providing both expertise and financing to help Ukrainian credit unions integrate environmental, social and governance (ESG) principles in financial services.
Green reconstruction and sustainable development have become crucial concepts for the Ukrainian society amid Russia’s ongoing full-scale invasion. Considering the massive mining and overall soil, air and water pollution resulting from active combat in the country, over 95% of Ukrainians consider environmental protection an important issue, according to a recent survey. Twenty-five percent of respondents also expect green reconstruction to be embedded in the post-war recovery plan, including energy efficiency, renewable energy and environmentally friendly vehicles.
Ukrainian credit unions encouraged by the CAP Project are willing to join the trend and stimulate their members to grow more socially responsible businesses through credit union finance.
To support this initiative, the CAP Project trained partner credit union professionals in early August on key principles of sustainable finance. The online training event provided the participants with an extensive theoretical framework on the:
- United Nations Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs).
- European Green Deal concept, which applies to Ukraine.
- Specifics of social entrepreneurship and the social responsibility of businesses.
- National Bank of Ukraine’s Sustainable Finance Development Policy 2025.
- ESG criteria.
The CAP Project also provided case study examples of loans considered to be contributing to sustainable development, including financing for environmentally friendly, innovative and inclusive solutions.
The training was critical now that Ukrainian credit unions are about to begin sustainable financing in their communities, as part of the $500,000 resilience initiative launched by WFCU earlier this summer. The WFCU resilience initiative aims to boost sustainable development and assist vulnerable populations in Ukraine.
With the external funds received and the necessary knowledge acquired during the training, Ukrainian credit unions are set to launch a new lending program to help Ukrainians revive business activities and contribute to the country’s green reconstruction.