Guidance Handbook

Since the original publication of the Green Bond Principles (GBP) in 2014, and the subsequent releases of the Social Bond Principles (SBP) and Sustainability Bond Guidelines, (SBG) the Sustainability-Linked Bond Principles (SLBP) and the Climate Transition Finance Handbook (CTFH), market participants have sought additional information on how to interpret this guidance especially for its practical application for transactions, as well as in the context of market developments and complementary initiatives.

The Executive Committee with the support of the Secretariat published in June 2019 an up-to-date edited compendium of the former Q&A in a “Guidance Handbook” organised thematically. The version published in June 2021 reflects the publication of the newly established SLBP and the CTFH, as well as updated versions of the GBP, SBP, and SBG, published in 2021 and contains additional responses relating to sustainability-linked bonds and climate transition finance. An updated version published in January 2022 has refined the answer to the question on buying back conventional Green, Social or Sustainability Bonds with proceeds of a new Green Social or Sustainability bond and moved it from the section “Use of Proceeds” to the section “Management of Proceeds”. The question, previously numbered, 2.1.2 is now 2.2.4.

The table of content covers 6 sections:

  • Fundamentals,
  • Core Components of the GBP/SBP/SLBP,
  • Market and Technical Issues,
  • Governance & Membership,
  • Other Market and Official Sector Initiatives, and
  • Social Bonds related to COVID-19.

The Guidance Handbook will integrate two standalone set of Q&As in due course.

  • Sustainable Securitisation: Following the publication of the updated Appendix 1 of the Green Bond Principles and Social Bond Principles in June 2022, a dedicated Q&A document was released at that time to further guide market participants. This document has been last updated in June 2023.
  • Sustainability-Linked Bonds: In September 2023, the Q&As related to SLBs were updated. As a growing number of issuers across different sectors and regions embrace this instrument and look at ways of demonstrating their ambition and increase their accountability, this resource provides additional guidance on key considerations that can help meet these objectives while strengthening the credibility of the SLB market.


Translation of the Guidance Handbook

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