Norway: Banks’ hidden ESG risks exposed in Norway wealth fund review

Finance has emerged as one of the sectors around which climate risk is least well understood, according to a review intended to set a new investing mandate for the world’s biggest wealth fund.

Norges Bank Investment Management, which oversees US$1.4 trillion (RM5.91 trillion) in assets, should be handed a new mandate to ensure the risks posed by global warming are properly reflected in its portfolio, the government-commissioned report found.

The fund should also pursue investment strategies that are in line with the Paris Agreement’s goal of achieving net-zero carbon emissions by 2050, it said. But to do that, it needs to identify the biggest climate risks.

Martin Skancke, the report’s lead author, said the fallout of climate change was still poorly understood for industries other than oil. “It’s hard to imagine that the market hasn’t already taken all the information on climate risks facing oil companies into account,” Skancke said in an interview. “But in other sectors, it can be hard to assess.”

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