Our approach to sustainability

Millennium development goals

The Millennium Development Goals (MDGs) are eight goals that governments agreed in response to the world's most significant development challenges.

The Bank’s sustainability strategy has elements that are aligned to the aims of several MDGs. Further to our focus on building a sustainable business in 2008, the Bank responded to the Business Call to Action led by the UK Prime Minister, Gordon Brown, to engage the private sector in using their core business activities and skills to contribute towards the MDGs. The Bank committed to launching a programme to support the growth of small and medium sized enterprises (SMEs), which is being piloted in Pakistan.

Standard Chartered’s response to the MDGs can be seen below:

MDG UN target within MDG Standard Chartered’s response
  • Eradicate extreme poverty and hunger
  • Halve, between 1990 and 2015, the proportion of people whose income is less than $1 a day
  • Commited to disburse USD 500mn over five years to microfinance institutions (MFIs) by 2011
  • Technical assistance for microfinance clients in Asia and Africa to enhance the MFI capacity to extended loans to more people in our markets
  • 2008 MDG Business Call to Action – supporting the growth of SMEs
  • Promote gender equality and empower women
  • Share of women in wage employment in the non-agricutural sector
  • GOAL – a women’s social and economic empowerment programme for girls in India
  • 2008 Asia CGI commitment to mentor 5,000 women entrepreneurs in Asia, partnering with Vital Voices
  • Group’s Diversity and inclusion programme focusing on women at work, in the community and as customers
  • Combat HIV and AIDS, malaria and other diseases
  • Have halted by 2015 and begun to reverse the spread of HIV and AIDS
  • Have halted by 2015 and begun to reverse the incidence of malaria and other major diseases
  • Living with HIV – educating one million people on prevention and living positively with HIV and AIDS by 2010
  • Seeing is Believing – providing sustainable eye care services to 20m people by 2015 in 20 cities
  • Nets for Life – distributing five million mosquito nets by 2013 across 18 African countries
  • Ensure environmental sustainability
  • Integrate the principles of sustainable development into country policies and programmes and reverse the loss of environmental resources
  • Environmental strategy to 2011 which focuses on reducing our operational impacts, financing the migration to low carbon economies and engaging stakeholders
  • $8-10bn commitment over five years to finance renewable and clean technology projects by 2012
  • One of five financial institutions to develop and sign The Climate Principles
  • Education of stakeholders on reducing their personal impact on the environment, through the Race for a Living Planet which generated 3.5m pledges across Africa, Asia and the Middle East


  • $3.2bnValue of renewable energy and clean technology projects financed since 2007
  • $385mCredit extended to partner microfinance institutions
  • 2m peopleEyesights restored thanks to Seeing is Believing