The Shanghai Forum, a conference dealing with the development of Asia and organised jointly by Fudan University and Chey Institute for Advanced Studies every year since 2005, is one of China’s most well-known international forums. The Shanghai Forum Pre-Session, a preliminary and preparatory event for the Forum, took place in Budapest in both 2018 and 2019, with the Magyar Nemzeti Bank acting as its host institution. Previously, the MNB was present three times at the Shanghai event as a co-organiser of one panel discussion. The main theme of this year’s conference, held between 29 and 31 October, was the analysis of recovery and resilience in the global post-pandemic era. In addition, participants discussed the role played by Asia in a sustainable future.

The MNB was represented at the event by Ádám Banai, Executive Director responsible for monetary policy and foreign exchange reserves management, who, as co-chair of the panel discussion titled ‘Green finance in building towards a zero carbon economy’, attended the conference via a live video call, together with the other foreign participants. The other two co-chairs of the panel discussion were Chen Shiyi, Professor at Fudan University and Executive Vice President of Anhui University, and Li Zhiqing, Deputy Secretary of the Party Committee at the School of Economics, Fudan University.

The MNB’s Executive Director stated that environmental sustainability is clearly one of the major challenges of the 21st century, and the fight against climate change involves enormous costs; therefore, the transformation of the financial system is also indispensable to ensure the financing needs of the transition to a green economy. He emphasised that the green transition also concerns central banks as key participants of the financial system, as climate change also affects traditional central bank mandates. He said that a number of central banks have decided in recent years to join the initiative called Network of Central Banks and Supervisors for Greening the Financial System (NGFS), whose aim is to cooperate and share knowledge in efforts to green the financial system. He mentioned the People’s Bank of China (PBoC) as a positive example, which has been definitely pioneering in the area of green finances, and which has already made significant achievements in this context. He highlighted that the Magyar Nemzeti Bank has been one of the first European central banks to have been given an environmental sustainability mandate by Parliament, and discussed the results achieved by the MNB so far, from the Bank’s Green Programme through the Green Mortgage Bond Purchase Scheme to the Green Home Programme. The Executive Director concluded that the green transition has already started, and both the PBoC and the MNB have taken numerous steps in that direction. As for the future, sharing knowledge with each other will be of crucial importance.