LONDON- Citigroup's veteran shipping finance banker Michael Parker is to become chairman of the bank's shipping & logistics business, a role which will include bolstering the lender's environmental focus in the sector, Citi said on Thursday.
In June, Citi was among a group of leading banks who signed up to environmental commitments known as the "Poseidon Principles."
These will for the first time integrate efforts to cut CO2 emissions into banks' decision making when providing loans to shipping companies.
The initiative highlights how businesses are having to respond to moves by investors around the world to factor environment, social and governance (ESG) risk into their commercial strategy.
International shipping accounts for 2.2% of global carbon dioxide (CO2) emissions and the U.N.'s International Maritime Organization (IMO), has a long-term goal to cut greenhouse gas emissions by 50% from 2008 levels by 2050.
"As the IMO progresses its agenda, we will look to adapt our policies for shipping in line with that and the evolution of the Poseidon Principles," Parker told Reuters.
Citi is one of the world's major shipping finance banks with a lending portfolio of around $11 billion.
"As chairman Michael will remain actively involved in senior client relationships and overall strategy as well as Citi’s sustainability and ESG agenda with the industry given his role as chairman of the drafting committee of the Poseidon Principles," Citi said in a statement.
"This is a planned transition as a consequence of Michael stepping up to a full-time role as chairman EMEA Corporate Banking for Citi."
Shreyas Chipalkatty, currently the division's head of EMEA, will take on Parker's previous role as global industry head of Citi's shipping & logistics business.
(Editing by Jane Merriman) ((email@example.com; + 44 207 542 4357 ; Reuters Messaging: firstname.lastname@example.org))