Union Bank of Nigeria, a leading financial service provider, has released its 2022 Citizenship, Sustainability, and Innovation (CSI) report, outlining the bank’s efforts across three pivotal areas – Citizenship, Sustainability, and Innovation.
The 7th edition of the report, titled ‘Driving Inclusive Growth; Impacting Lives, Enabling Success,’ provides an extensive overview of Union Bank’s ongoing commitment to fostering a sustainable future.
It chronicles the bank’s dedication to embedding responsible business practices and making a positive difference in the lives of individuals and communities, and it offers an in-depth examination of the bank’s activities for the year in review, shedding light on its strategies, performance, and processes in the implementation of various projects and initiatives.
Aligned with its overarching theme for the year, Union Bank focused its efforts on five of the United Nations’ Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs). These include Quality Education (SDG 4), Gender Equality (SDG 5), Affordable and Clean Energy (SDG 7), Climate Action (SDG 13), and Partnership to Achieve Goals (SDG 17).
These goals served as a guide, steering the bank’s dedication towards positively impacting the lives of its stakeholders and society. Speaking on the 2022 CSI report, Union Bank’s Chief Executive Officer, Mudassir Amray, emphasised the bank’s commitment to driving inclusive growth.
He highlighted key partnerships that helped achieve this. He said: “We firmly believe that small businesses are the engine house of economic growth. This is why we entered a $30 million partnership agreement with the International Finance Corporation (IFC), the largest global development institution focused on the private sector in emerging markets.
This partnership aims to enhance access to finance for smaller businesses in Nigeria, supporting increased trade and enabling us to expand lending to businesses in critical sectors, including food, healthcare, manufacturing, and services.”
Amray also highlighted the bank’s efforts in driving financial inclusion. He said: “We are also particularly proud of our financial inclusion initiatives, such as our partnership with Wacot Rice Limited, which enabled us to reach around 7,000 farmers across five Local Government Areas in Kebbi State.
Furthermore, our unwavering commitment to gender equality in lending was evident as we disbursed over 17 billion naira in loans to nearly 16,000 women in 2022.
Our vision remains resolute in building a more robust and expansive bank, underpinned by a digital-centric strategy and elevated governance standards geared toward fostering sustainable growth and contributing to Nigerian society.”
Also speaking about the report, Union Bank’s Chief Brand and Marketing Officer Olufunmilola Aluko highlighted the bank’s collaborative approach to sustainability and corporate responsibility.
She said: “Throughout the year, Union Bank has actively collaborated with partners to enhance our performance, particularly on our material issues. We aim to sustain this momentum by building on partnerships with peers and across industries to support our customers, communities, and society.
Our initiatives aimed at empowering underprivileged populations, promoting education, and advancing gender equality have yielded significant results, positively impacting thousands of lives and nurturing the potential of future generations.”
Consistent with previous editions, the 2022 report adheres to the Global Reporting Initiative (GRI) standard and aligns with the Nigerian Sustainable Banking Principles (NSBPs) and the United Nations’ Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs). This commitment underscores Union Bank’s dedication to transparency and accountability in reporting on its projects.