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Sustainable finance, current and future implications for banks and monetary policy: assessing COVID impacts

Ojo/Roedl, Marianne (2021): Sustainable finance, current and future implications for banks and monetary policy: assessing COVID impacts. Published in:

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Abstract

The implications of COVID developments for monetary policy will certainly extend beyond the increased use of digital platforms and payments. The current environment is also focused on smart green techniques and green initiatives aimed at promoting a transition to a net zero based carbon emissions economy. During the onset of the pandemic, it was initially thought that carbon emissions would fall drastically – given the impact of the pandemic, not only on the airlines industry, but also as a result of “Stay at Home” measures imposed by jurisdictions, which even made it illegal to drive to certain places, where purposes for doing so were unjustified.

However, the pandemic has also witnessed unprecedented levels in digital subscriptions, online sales and marketing – also fueled through digital payments and the use of digital platforms and distributed ledger technologies in facilitating cashless payments – cash, namely bank notes and coins, also being considered to be a medium of COVID transmission. Coupled with attributes such speed, convenience and ease, the need for financial inclusion has also become an objective in facilitating the era of innovative digital means of payments.

As well as considering the current implications of measures that have been instigated to address the impacts of the pandemic, drawing from past and current lessons from selected jurisdictions, this paper also considers why the transition to a net zero carbon economy may prove more challenging than may first appear. However, jurisdictional differences and historical developments will play a part in determining how sustainable certain implemented policies and measures are – as well as in facilitating a transition to normality.

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