Swedish pension companies join fight against Covid-19

Swedish pension companies, Skandia and Länsförsäkringar have invested in a social bond that aims to fight agains the Covid-19 pandemic in Europe.

Skandia, has invested SEK 450m, whilst Länsförsäkringar has invested SEK 380m. The Social Awareness Bond is focussed on health and is issued by the European Investment Bank (EIB). It focuses on investments in Europe that are severely affected by the Covid-19 pandemic.

Social Awareness Bonds usually have a general health care orientation, but due to the emergency situation, the EIB is directing funding to activities linked to the Covid-19 pandemic. This means funding for authorities responsible for healthcare and the fight against the pandemic.

Commenting, Länsförsäkringar head of responsible investments, Kristofer Dreiman, said: "This investment in the EIB's bond gives us the opportunity to support hard-hit Europe during the ongoing pandemic. The intention of the bond also reflects our own work on responsible investment and contributes to the United Nation's third sustainability goal on good health and wellbeing, one of Länsförsäkringar's priority global sustainability goals."

In addition, Skandia head of asset management, Lars-Göran Orrevall, said: “This is a very important investment that enables urgent investment in European healthcare infrastructure in a situation where healthcare is hard pressed and medical equipment is a scarce commodity.

“Skandia has a long history of community engagement and making this community investment feels extraordinarily important when it comes to a crisis that we have not experienced before.”

The revenue from the bond is distributed within the EIB's lending operations, which contribute to the United Nation’s global sustainability goals one (No poverty), three (Good health and wellbeing) and six (Clean water and sanitation). The overall objective is to enable financing of health projects that provide access to efficient and accessible healthcare.

“It is of the utmost importance to make investments that contribute to the fight against Covid-19, which now threatens life and health, but also many jobs. Sometimes some investments feel extra important and this is one of them. The bond is a concrete example of what sustainable investments mean when we talk about the global sustainability goals in health,” Skandia portfolio manager, Olof Klockhoff, said.

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