Yesterday at the United Nations (UN) headquarters in New York, the Commonwealth Bank of Australia (CBA) was announced as a signatory of the Tobacco-Free Finance Pledge, led by Tobacco Free Portfolios.

As part of a global multi-stakeholder response to addressing the health, societal and environmental impacts of tobacco, CBA recognises that banks and financial institutions have a role to play.

In signing the Pledge, CBA joins a coalition of more than 200 organisations across 21 countries with over US $16 trillion assets under management that are committed to a tobacco-free world for current and future generations.1

The CEO and founder of Tobacco Free Portfolios, Professor Bronwyn King AO, an Australian radiation oncologist, said the global finance sector was vital to a tobacco-free future.

“There is no safe-level of tobacco consumption. Tobacco has caused four times more deaths in 2020 than Covid‑19 in 2020 and it has filled our oceans with plastic.

As the world prioritises global health and sustainability, we welcome the Commonwealth Bank of Australia’s role in a rapidly growing global tobacco-free movement and we encourage others to follow suit.

The Tobacco-Free Finance Pledge recognises the leadership role of financial institutions like Commonwealth Bank in driving progress through their lending policies, which will help safeguard the wellbeing of people and the planet for generations to come,” she said.

About the Tobacco-Free Finance Pledge

The Tobacco-Free Finance Pledge builds on key global finance initiatives such as the Investor Statement in Support of World No Tobacco Day, produced in 2017 by the UN-supported Principles for Responsible Investment (PRI) and the UN Environment Programme Principles for Sustainable Insurance (PSI).

The Tobacco-Free Finance Pledge encourages signatories to consider the adoption of tobacco-free finance policies across lending, insurance and investment, in line with the United Nations’ Sustainable Development Goals and the World Health Organization Framework Convention on Tobacco Control.

The ultimate goal is to reduce the current annual death toll of 7 million people a year dying from tobacco-related illnesses. According to the World Health Organization, tobacco consumption is the single largest preventable cause of death.

Becoming tobacco-free is one way CBA is committed to a brighter, more sustainable future. Read more about CBA’s approach to managing the environmental and social impacts of our business activities and operations in our Environmental and Social (E&S) Framework.

1The Pledge - Tobacco Free Portfolios

Go to CBA Newsroom for the latest news and announcements from Commonwealth Bank.