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Green finance expertise in short supply in mainland China: CFA Institute

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Green finance expertise in short supply in mainland China: CFA Institute

China lacks both an adequate supply and a pipeline of finance professionals with expertise in environmental, social and governance (ESG) issues as demand for such people surges amid a boom in sustainable investing, according to the CFA Institute.

China is struggling to develop ESG analysts, strategists and executives to fill the rapidly expanding demand in the finance market, the organisation said in a report. The government, enterprises and universities should work together to build a structured and standardised system for cultivating ESG talent, it added.

“As ESG is embraced by more companies in China, the need for the knowledge, skills and capabilities to deliver on their ESG-related goals has created a massive gap in terms of the thirst for ESG and sustainability knowledge,” said David Zhang, China head at the CFA Institute.

Driven by the global “do-good” investment boom and China’s climate goal of reaching net-zero greenhouse gas emissions by 2060, the country is seeing a rapid surge in demand for the skills and talent to do sustainability-related work, especially in the financial market. But unclear career positioning, a lack of training opportunities and a shortage of career guidance are inhibiting the development of such talent, according to the CFA Institute.
The Wujing Power Station is seen in Shanghai on January 24, 2024. Photo: Bloomberg

Even professionals who are in ESG-related jobs today lack the requisite expertise to do their jobs, with 60 per cent of ESG professionals having received no relevant training, the organisation found.

Between May 2022 and April 2023, the number of active ESG-related job postings in China increased by 64.5 per cent compared with a year earlier, according to a report released by China’s largest job recruitment site Liepin last July. The number of applicants increased by more than 150 per cent in that span, as salaries 30 per cent higher than those for average financial jobs drew candidates’ interest.

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However, qualified people with sufficient ESG-related expertise remain in short supply, as fewer than 10 per cent of the ESG professionals in mainland China hold at least one ESG-related qualification or accreditation, according to the report, issued last month. Relevant qualifications include the CFA Institute’s own certificate in ESG investing, the Certified ESG Analyst qualification offered by the European Federation of Financial Analysts Societies, and the Sustainability and Climate Risk certificate offered by the Global Association of Risk Professionals.

China steps up carbon emissions trading regulation, data fabrication crackdown

“There is a significant opportunity for China to catch up to developed economies in terms of ESG-related products, as market interest in sustainable projects is growing fast,” Zhang said. “Given the shortage of ESG talent and the strong demand for sustainable finance skills, what is needed is the expertise to drive that growth.”

China’s sustainable finance market could more than quadruple to 70 trillion yuan (US$9.8 trillion) by 2031, according to Swiss investment bank UBS. The size of the green finance market in the world’s largest emitter of greenhouse gases already reached 16 trillion yuan last year, accounting for about 8 per cent of the country’s entire financial system.

To catch up with global peers and accelerate its transition towards a low-carbon economy, China is introducing stricter ESG disclosure rules. The Shanghai Stock Exchange has encouraged companies to disclose ESG information, and all companies on the Science and Technology Innovation Board, known as the Star Market, have been required to disclose ESG information in their annual reports beginning in 2022.

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“With mandatory ESG disclosure requirements on the horizon, and a complex and evolving landscape of ESG reporting standards, there is pressure from the real economy to urgently address the notable shortage of ESG skills and expertise, and bridge the ESG talent gap,” Zhang said.

Among current ESG-related jobs in mainland China, investment positions have the largest gap between demand and supply, followed by investment-analysis positions and risk-management roles, according to the CFA Institute.

The government should establish ESG, green finance and sustainable finance development guidelines, clarify the standards for practitioners, and introduce more qualification and degree certificates, Zhang said. Meanwhile, universities need to accelerate the construction of ESG finance-related courses to make up for the shortcomings in knowledge, and professional organisations should integrate all parties’ strengths to accelerate the implementation of vocational education and training, he said.

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#Merky Books signs personal finance guide for women from Bola Sol

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#Merky Books signs personal finance guide for women from Bola Sol

#Merky Books has signed Your Money Life, a personal finance guide, from financial advisor and Grazia’s money columnist Bola Sol. 

Lemara Lindsay-Prince, senior commissioning editor, acquired world rights from Lauren Gardner at Bell Lomax Moreton. Elena Roberts will edit the book and Your Money Life will be published in trade paperback, e-book and audio in August 2024. 

Billed as an “indispensable” book on how women can “build their financial knowledge to enhance their wellbeing, secure their future and pay for the things that matter most, even in these challenging economic times”. Sol will offer “essential tools to… make your bank balance healthier, grow your ambition to become wealthier and finally show you can use your money smartly to pay for the things you want and become happier”.

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February 29 Has Been A Rare Yet Interesting Date In Baseball Finance

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February 29 Has Been A Rare Yet Interesting Date In Baseball Finance

Welcome to February 29, the day that occurs every Leap Year. For precocious prospects Jackson Holliday of the Baltimore Orioles or Jackson Chourio of the Milwaukee Brewers, this is only the sixth time they have experienced the date. So it is “rare” for them at ages 20 and 19, respectively.

Still, the date has importance in the financial history of baseball

A total of 23,114 men have been in a Major League Baseball game since 1876. Only 16 were born on February 29. Two of those were among the game’s finest – Pepper Martin of the St. Louis Cardinals and Al Rosen of the Cleveland Indians.

Martin was part of the legendary Gashouse Gang. That talented group of wild and crazy guys helped St. Louis rule the National League in the 1930s. In a 13-year career, Martin batted over .300 six times, was a four-time All-Star and led the NL in stolen bases three times. Despite being wildly popular, his top salary was a reported $9,000 in 1934, which equates to $209,145 today.

Rosen was a slugger for 10 years (1947-56) in Cleveland. Despite hitting well over .300 with power in the minors after missing four years due to World War II, he did not become a regular until 1950. All-Star Ken Keltner held the Indians’ third-base job until then.

Over the next five years, Rosen averaged 31 homers, 114 RBI, .298 average — and won the 1953 American League Most Valuable Player Award

Despite that, Cleveland cut his $42,500 ($478,934 today) salary to $37,500 ($425,078 today) for 1955. A broken finger that did not heal properly and back injury from an auto accident curtailed his production in 1955-56. He retired at age 32.

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Rosen later was team president of the New York Yankees (1978-79), Houston Astros (1980-85) and San Francisco Giants (1985-92).

Big Bucks 60 Years Apart

Economics sure has changed over the years. Nothing underscores this more than two financial transactions that occurred in Cleveland on Feb. 29.

On that date in 1956, the Indians were sold to a group that included Hall of Famer Hank Greenberg. The former Detroit Tigers slugger had become general manager of the Indians, a club two years removed from a 111-win season and which finished second in 1955 with 93 wins. Attendance was great.

The roster was loaded. Hall of Famers Bob Feller, Early Wynn and Bob Lemon led a pitching staff that including rising star Herb Score. Hall of Famer Larry Doby and Rosen led the offense. Young slugger Rocky Colavito was a rookie.

And for all of that, Greenberg’s group paid a whopping $4 million for the franchise.

Fast forward to Feb. 29, 2016, in Cleveland where ownership opened the purse strings for a different $4 million payout. It all went to 37-year-old infielder Juan Uribe. He hit .206 in 73 games and retired.

Big Money … At The Time

On Feb. 29, 1972, the great Henry Aaron became the first MLB player to sign a contract for $200,000. Hammering Hank was 38 years old, had already hit 683 homers and was chasing Babe Ruth’s cherished long-ball record of 714.

The sum of money was something that Aaron never imagined when he made $6,000 a year as a 20-year-old rookie in 1954. For his 23-year career through 1976, he was paid about $2.1 million total according to Baseball-Reference.com estimates.

For those wondering, Joe DiMaggio got the first $100,000 contract, with the New York Yankees in 1950. That means it took 22 years for the game’s top salary to double.

Fast forward another 22 years to 1994. Bobby Bonilla of the New York Mets was the game’s highest-paid player – at $6,300,000 a season — an astronomical 3050% increase.

Add another 22 years to 2016 and the game’s richest deal for that year belonged to Los Angeles Dodgers’ ace Clayton Kershaw at $32 million – an increase of another 407.9%.

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By 2038, the top contract may be as mind-boggling to baseball fans then as those increases are to us today. Mind-boggling by leaps.

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Norton Rose Fulbright Recruits Partner to Public Finance Team

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Norton Rose Fulbright Recruits Partner to Public Finance Team

Alison Radecki has joined Norton Rose Fulbright as a partner in the New York office, the firm said Wednesday.

Radecki helps issuers and not-for-profit institutions access the municipal bond market in the healthcare, cultural institution, higher education, and charter school sectors, according to Norton Rose Fulbright.

Helen Pennock also joins as senior counsel. Both lawyers join from Orrick.

This story was produced by Bloomberg Law Automation.

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