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Climate Transition Risk and Development Finance: A Carbon Risk Assessment of China's Overseas Energy Portfolios


Monasterolo, Irene; Zheng, Jiani Isabelle; Battiston, Stefano (2018). Climate Transition Risk and Development Finance: A Carbon Risk Assessment of China's Overseas Energy Portfolios. China & World Economy, 26(6):116-142.

Abstract

The role of development finance institutions in low‐income and emerging countries is fundamental to provide long‐term capital for investments in climate mitigation and adaptation. Nevertheless, development finance institutions still lack sound and transparent metrics to assess their projects' exposure to climate risks and their impact on global climate action. To attempt to fill this gap, we develop a novel climate stress‐test methodology for portfolios of loans to energy infrastructure projects. We apply the methodology to the portfolios of overseas energy projects of two main Chinese policy banks. We estimate their exposure to economic and financial shocks that would result in government inability to introduce timely 2°C‐aligned climate policies and from investors' inability to adapt their business to the changing climate and policy environment. We find that the negative shocks are mostly concentrated on coal and oil projects and vary across regions from 4.2 to 22 percent of the total loan value. Given the current leverage of Chinese policy banks, these losses could induce severe financial distress, with implications on macroeconomic and financial stability.

Abstract

The role of development finance institutions in low‐income and emerging countries is fundamental to provide long‐term capital for investments in climate mitigation and adaptation. Nevertheless, development finance institutions still lack sound and transparent metrics to assess their projects' exposure to climate risks and their impact on global climate action. To attempt to fill this gap, we develop a novel climate stress‐test methodology for portfolios of loans to energy infrastructure projects. We apply the methodology to the portfolios of overseas energy projects of two main Chinese policy banks. We estimate their exposure to economic and financial shocks that would result in government inability to introduce timely 2°C‐aligned climate policies and from investors' inability to adapt their business to the changing climate and policy environment. We find that the negative shocks are mostly concentrated on coal and oil projects and vary across regions from 4.2 to 22 percent of the total loan value. Given the current leverage of Chinese policy banks, these losses could induce severe financial distress, with implications on macroeconomic and financial stability.

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Additional indexing

Item Type:Journal Article, refereed, original work
Communities & Collections:03 Faculty of Economics > Department of Banking and Finance
Dewey Decimal Classification:330 Economics
Language:English
Date:1 December 2018
Deposited On:05 Jun 2019 07:21
Last Modified:25 Sep 2019 00:35
Publisher:Wiley-Blackwell Publishing, Inc.
ISSN:1671-2234
OA Status:Closed
Publisher DOI:https://doi.org/10.1111/cwe.12264
Official URL:https://onlinelibrary.wiley.com/doi/full/10.1111/cwe.12264
Other Identification Number:merlin-id:17583

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