A strategy to prevent greenwashing

Finansinspektionen will prevent greenwashing in the financial sector through preventive measures and supervisory activities. Today, in a new report that is submitted to the government, FI presents a strategy to prevent greenwashing.

"Preventing greenwashing is a prioritised area for FI. We need to both guide market participants in order to prevent problems from arising and use targeted supervisory activities when necessary," says FI's Head of Sustainability Johanna Fager Wettergren.

As part of its ongoing supervision, FI will work with different issues related to greenwashing, for example how individual financial companies designs their pre-contractual information for sustainable financial products or if sustainability-related commitments made by a company are aligned with how the operations are actually carried out. International cooperation between supervisory authorities, in part to develop and specify requirements in the new regulations, also play a key role in preventing greenwashing.

Work to prevent greenwashing is one of the prioritised actions in the roadmap for sustainable finance that FI is also publishing today. The roadmap sets out three goals that will guide us in our work through 2025 and our priorities to achieve these goals.

"It is important that we have a long-term plan for our sustainability work and that the finance sector knows what we consider to be most important: good access to relevant, comparable and reliable sustainability-related information, high levels of trust in a sustainable finance market, and resilience to sustainability risks in the financial system," says Wettergren.

Greenwashing is when a firm describes its operations and its products as more sustainable than what they are in practice. This means that consumers and investors are misled to invest in products that do not meet their expectations and requirements from a sustainability perspective. In the long run, there is a risk that greenwashing can undermine the trust in sustainable financial products and prevent capital from being channelled to investments that support the transition to a sustainable economy.