Japan’s MUFG Bank Invests in Forest Funds

MUFG Bank, a consolidated subsidiary of Mitsubishi UFJ Financial Group, has signed an investment agreement with Imprint Nature-Based Opportunities (NBO) and Manulife Forest Climate Fund (MFCF).

Through the deals with the two global forest investment funds, MUFG hopes to contribute to the creation and development of the carbon credit (CC) market in Japan while supporting the global CC market.

NBO, managed by Goldman Sachs Asset Management, makes globally diversified investments in forest projects in the Americas, Asia, Africa, and Europe, utilising knowledge gained through their extensive experience and global network.

MFCF, managed by Manulife Investment Management Timberland and Agriculture (MIMTA), makes globally diversified investments, primarily in the Americas, leveraging MIMTA resources that encompass a long history and wealth of knowledge in forest fund management and operations.

In addition to financial returns through investments in forest projects, both funds seek to receive CCs, a tradable form of greenhouse gas emission reductions and carbon removal. These CCs are to receive measurement and certification standards for voluntary emission reduction efforts, such as the Verified Carbon Standard (VCS) or the American Carbon Registry (ACR).

Furthermore, each forest project is expected to obtain international certification such as that provided by the Forest Stewardship Council (FSC).

In a statement, MUFG said Corporate initiatives utilising CC are gaining momentum globally, and in Japan, the government’s plan for realising a “new form of capitalism” is expected to include full-fledged initiatives such as the promotion of voluntary emissions trading and the development of a CC market, starting next fiscal year.