Citi today released its 2019 Environmental, Social and Governance (ESG) Report. The report builds upon Citi’s Global Citizenship Report, which Citi had been publishing since 2001. The ESG report highlights the ways in which Citi is enabling progress and sustainable growth in communities around the globe. While this report and related summary cover the period before the COVID-19 pandemic, its broad themes – fighting climate change, addressing the affordable housing crisis and reducing economic inequality – continue to be key priorities for Citi.
“While we can’t yet see how COVID-19 will impact our society and communities over time, I’m confident that our ESG efforts to date will meaningfully contribute to Citi’s ability to weather this crisis,” said Michael Corbat, Citi CEO. “We are not only working to manage the short-term impact of COVID-19 but also are investing in long-term solutions focused on economic recovery and financial stability.”
Among the many priority areas this report addresses, key developments from 2019 include:
- Sustainable progress: Citi financed and facilitated $164 billion in environmental finance activity (2014-2019) to help reduce the impacts of climate change, exceeding the bank’s $100 Billion Environmental Finance Goal more than four years ahead of schedule. Recognizing the increasing urgency of climate change, Citi continues to work to be a leading bank in driving the transition to a low-carbon economy.
- Supporting entrepreneurs:
- Citi launched the $150 million Citi Impact Fund, the largest impact investing fund created by a bank using its own capital, to make equity investments in “double bottom line” private sector companies that are making a positive impact on society.
- Citi launched Scaling Enterprises, a $100 million loan guarantee facility in partnership with OPIC and the Ford Foundation, to provide early-stage financing to companies that expand access to financial services for low-income communities in emerging markets.
- Affordable housing: Citi provided $6 billion in loans for affordable housing projects in the U.S., making the bank the largest affordable housing lender in the U.S. for the 10th consecutive year.
- Diversity and pay equity: Citi publicly shared its raw pay gap in 2019 and progress made to close this gap in 2020. The bank is also using data-driven insights to inform how it increases representation of women and U.S. minorities in senior and higher-paying roles.
- Ethical artificial intelligence: Citi was one of the first private sector companies to develop its own set of ethical principles for artificial intelligence (AI), which aim to ensure effective governance, risk management and responsible innovation in its use of AI.
- Future of work: The Citi Foundation invested $194 million (2014-2019) to address global youth unemployment and workforce development through its Pathway to Progress initiative, which helps prepare youth for 21st century jobs and put them on a path to economic progress.
- Taking a stand: Citi was the first US bank to sign on to UN Principles for Responsible Banking and the Citi CEO signed the Business Roundtable's Statement on the Purpose of a Corporation.
Citi’s annual Global Community Day is another way that employees and their families give back to their communities. Last year, nearly 120,000 volunteers around the world participated. In lieu of in-person volunteering this year, Citi will be celebrating its 15th annual Global Community Day through virtual and independent volunteer activities, including youth mentoring, career coaching and acts of service to support local communities facing critical challenges.
In the midst of this global pandemic, Citi remains committed to supporting clients and community partners to help drive positive social and environmental impact around the world. Citi and the Citi Foundation have committed over $65 million to date in support of COVID-19-related community relief efforts.
Citi continues to take proactive measures to preserve the well-being of employees globally, including special compensation awards to 75,000 colleagues to help ease the financial burden of this situation. Citi is also offering assistance to impacted customers through credit card payment deferrals, fee waivers, hardship programs, and additional small business support.
“While COVID-19 has caused us to redirect funds to organizations providing relief and to redesign established efforts like Global Community Day, the character of our company continues to come through,” said Ed Skyler, Head of Public Affairs at Citi and Chair of the Citi Foundation. “Whether it is through helping small businesses keep their people on payroll or repurposing a cafeteria to provide meals for food banks, we are finding new ways to help and support the communities we serve. We don’t know how long this crisis will last but we will keep doing our best."
This report is prepared in accordance with the Global Reporting Initiative (GRI) Standards: Core option and is aligned with the United Nations (UN) Global Compact and UN Guiding Principles on Business and Human Rights frameworks and the recommendations of the Task Force on Climate-related Financial Disclosures. To learn more about Citi’s ESG efforts around the world and to view the report in full, visit https://www.citigroup.com/citi/about/citizenship/.
Citi, the leading global bank, has approximately 200 million customer accounts and does business in more than 160 countries and jurisdictions. Citi provides consumers, corporations, governments and institutions with a broad range of financial products and services, including consumer banking and credit, corporate and investment banking, securities brokerage, transaction services, and wealth management.
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