Newcastle Port Agreement – Highlights
In May 2021, NAB announced its role in developing a loan for the Port of Newcastle. This loan aligned funding for Australia’s largest seaport on Australia’s east coast with long-term results that respect the environment and society.
Read the full May 4, 2021 announcement here.
As the Sustainable Finance Structuring Coordinator, NAB has contributed to the development of a sustainability related finance framework and a green finance framework with the Port of Newcastle.
This transaction was widely reported in the national and international media. Due to the complexity of the refinancing arrangement, some reports contain factual inaccuracies.
The NAB is keenly aware of all points of view on how to manage our planet in a safe and sustainable manner. We want to make sure the facts are clearly stated.
NAB is committed to achieving zero net emissions in its funding by 2050.
We are the only Australian bank to have signed up to the United Nations Environment Program Collective Commitment to Climate Action, which provides us with the framework to achieve this.
Key facts about NAB’s role and involvement in the recent Port of Newcastle refinancing
- NAB was one of 10 lenders involved in this transaction. NAB was not the only lender.
- The Port of Newcastle is a long-standing customer of NAB. The NAB did not step in to subscribe to Port of Newcastle.
- NAB’s exposure to the Port of Newcastle has not changed following this recent refinancing.
Key facts about the Port of Newcastle Sustainability Loan (“SLL”) and the Green Loan Structure
- NAB has not allocated the SLL loan exposure to its portfolio of green bond assets.
- There was no impact on NAB labeled bonds (which remain compliant with the Climate Bonds Standard / Green Bond Principles). Specifically, SLLs are not included in the NAB Green Bond asset portfolio unless they also meet the relevant criteria for Green Bonds.
- The frameworks for green financing of SOPs and financing of loans linked to sustainable development are consistent with applicable internationally recognized market standards and are the subject of second part opinions of third-party insurance provider DNV GL.
- NAB is not one of the lenders in the green loan tranche of the refinance.
- The Newcastle Port transaction is aligned with NAB’s current lending policies.
Key facts around the modern slavery metric in sustainability lending
- Federal law is a modern slavery risk management disclosure requirement. It is not prescriptive on how to manage and measure this risk (it asks you to explain what you are doing).
- There are provisions in the sustainability loan that encourage specific modern slavery risk management practices and allow us to measure PON’s performance for modern slavery risk.
- Specifically, PON will review all vendors and engage with medium and high risk vendors to resolve any modern slavery issues identified.
Key facts about the role of the Port of Newcastle in the community and its diversity of commerce
- The Port of Newcastle (PON) supports around 9,000 full-time equivalent jobs nationwide.
- The port handles 4,400 vessel movements and 164 million tonnes of freight per year. The port handles a variety of international trade, including coal, wheat and other grains, fertilizers, steel, cement, bulk liquids, containers, machinery and alumina.
- The Port of Newcastle is diversifying its trade while striving to create a secure, sustainable and environmentally and socially responsible future.
- The Port of Newcastle became the first port in Australia and New Zealand to be EcoPort certified in January 2020, a global environmental and sustainability standard for the port sector.
You can read more here about how the NAB is putting together a team of climate experts to support low carbon transition plans.
David Gall, Group Director of NAB – Corporate & Institutional Banking, explains why bankers’ skills in climate matters are important.