20 June 2023
The World Bank is issuing the first bond of its kind which, among other things, aims to finance sustainable projects in developing countries with a focus on road safety. Folksamgruppen is the sole investor in the bond, which will, among other things, contribute to supporting projects to increase knowledge about road safety to prevent traffic injuries in developing countries – but also to projects in emergency medical care and rehabilitation services for care after road accidents.
Traffic accidents are the leading cause of death globally among children and young people. Every year, 1.3 million people die and 50 million are injured in preventable road accidents – a figure that the UN aims to halve by 2030. To reach that goal, the World Bank estimates that around $260 billion in funding is needed and that private means to get there. Therefore, the World Bank is now issuing its first bond of its kind with the aim, among other things, of increasing knowledge about road safety and thereby preventing road accidents in developing countries.
– People in developing countries today have to pay the highest price as a consequence of a lack of road safety, integrating road safety into all relevant activities of the World Bank will have a big positive impact. We are grateful that Folksam supports our operations and highlights road safety as a priority development area, says Jorge Familiar, Vice President and Treasurer at the World Bank.
In order to reach the goal of halving the number of deaths and injuries in traffic, the UN held a high-level meeting for global traffic safety in New York in the summer of 2022. Folksam’s CEO Ylva Wessén was invited to speak about how insurance and pension companies can contribute to financing global road safety projects. Folksam proposed that a road safety bond should be drawn up – which has now also taken place in collaboration with the World Bank.
– We at Folksam are experts in road safety – we have researched the subject for over 50 years and have been highly involved in important advances such as seat belt reminders, whiplash protection and center rails. This is another major step forward as the World Bank enables private capital to invest in road safety-enhancing projects, in a way that is beneficial to all parties; partly for projects at a local level which can now receive the necessary funding for increased traffic safety, partly for Folksam which makes a safe and attractive investment on behalf of customers while actually saving many lives, concludes Ylva Wessén, president and CEO of the Folksam Group.
The insurance and pension industry in Sweden manages around 6,400 billion kroner and in Europe around 96,000 billion kroner – capital which, through smart investments in roads and safer vehicles, for example, would have a great effect globally. Folksam now hopes that this initiative can inspire innovation, creativity and new ways of thinking about financing road safety.
Folksam Life: SEK 464 million
Folksam Sak: SEK 142 million
KPA Tjänstepensionsförsäkring AB: SEK 384 million
KPA Tjänstepension AB: SEK 10 million
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