Advancing sustainable growth in the United States and China

Paulson Institute and Chinese Government Convene Roundtable on U.S.-China Green Building Energy Efficiency Fund

Aim is to facilitate green finance needed for low-carbon economic growth


Beijing—The Paulson Institute and the Chinese government’s Office of the Central Leading Group on Financial and Economic Affairs convened top Chinese securities, banking, insurance, energy and housing regulators, as well as leading U.S. and Chinese financial and industrial companies to discuss the U.S.-China Green Building Energy Efficiency Fund, which was announced last September during President Xi Jinping’s visit to the United States. The Paulson Institute is working with the Chinese government to help launch the fund, which aims to drive the development of environmentally sustainable buildings through the deployment of U.S. technology.

“The documents from the Fifth Plenary Session of the 18th Communist Party of China and the Integrated Reform Plan for Promoting Ecological Progress both clearly support the creation of a green development fund. It’s time to take actions to accelerate its implementation. Promoting the establishment of a U.S.-China Green Building Fund is a concrete step forward,” said Liu He, head of the Office of the Central Leading Group on Financial and Economic Affairs.

“There is plenty of capital in China and elsewhere in the world, but it needs to be allocated appropriately to low-carbon sectors that can also generate new sources of economic growth and create new jobs,” said Paulson Institute Chairman Henry M. Paulson, Jr. “With the right incentives and regulations in place, the private sector can work together with the government to unlock a truly sustainable economic future for China.”

“The entire securities and futures industry is very supportive of green development. In addition to support from the well-known stocks and bonds sectors, we are also giving very careful consideration to the promotion of green development through the futures markets and private equity markets,” said Fang Xinghai, director general of the Economic 4th Bureau of the Office of the Central Leading Group on Financial and Economic Affairs and vice chairman of the China Securities Regulatory Commission.

“Green finance presents an opportunity to support China’s transition to a low carbon economy. With the creation of this fund, we bring together the best of U.S. technologies and Chinese market opportunities in a practical way to support this goal,” said Deborah Lehr, senior fellow at the Paulson Institute.

With China designating green finance as a priority issue during its presidency of this year’s G20 meeting, today’s meeting focused on the creation of efficient financing tools to support China’s transition to a low-carbon economic model. The participants discussed specific mechanisms for the Green Building Energy Efficiency Fund, U.S. technologies that could best be deployed with the help of the fund, and projects for financing consideration.

The intent of the fund is to enable and accelerate the deployment of U.S. technology and expertise in the Chinese market to substantially reduce CO2 and other climate-related emissions, while improving energy efficiency, promoting industrial productivity, encouraging cross-border innovation, and creating green jobs. To achieve those goals, the fund aims to find ways to bridge the higher upfront costs of green technologies with the longer-term returns. Buildings account for more than 30% of global greenhouses gas emissions, and China is the world’s largest builder, with plans for 50% of all new construction for the foreseeable future. The goal in developing this unique cross-border Public Private Partnership is to marry the best of U.S. technology, know-how and experience with Chinese creativity, market scale and rapid commercialization.

Participating and speaking in the forum in Beijing were Yi Gang, vice governor of PBOC; Zhou Mubing, vice chairman of CBRC; Fang Xinghai, vice chairman of CSRC; Chen Wenhui, vice chairman of CIRC; Chen Yiming, chief engineer of MOHURD; Zhang Yuqing, deputy director of National Energy Administration; Ma Xin, deputy secretary general of NDRC; Jiang Deguo, vice governor of Hebei Province; Zhu Xiaoming, mayor of Zhenjiang; Zhang Junfeng, vice mayor of Zhengzhou; and Zhong Hongjiang, vice mayor of Shaoxing.

In addition to the green building fund initiative, the Paulson Institute is also working with the People’s Bank of China to help provide recommendations on the development of a global green finance system ahead of the G20 Leadership Summit, which will be in Hangzhou in September. These recommendations will be sent to the G20 Green Finance Study Group, which is chaired by the People’s Bank of China and the Bank of England, for the study group that is finalizing a synthesized report to be presented at the G20 meeting in September.

About the Paulson Institute: The Paulson Institute is a non-partisan, non-profit Think and Do Tank grounded in the principle that today’s most pressing economic and environmental challenges can be solved only if the United States and China—the world’s largest economies, energy consumers, and emitters of carbon—work in complementary ways. The Institute’s mission is to strengthen US-China relations and to advance sustainable economic growth and environmental protection in both countries. The Institute’s programs—the “Do” side—focus on advancing the transition to more sustainable, low-carbon economic models in China and the United States through industrial transformation, smart urbanization programs, and environmental conservation. In so doing, the Institute aims to advance industrial and nature-based solutions to climate change.

The Institute also promotes bilateral cross-border investment that will help create jobs and strengthen U.S.-China relations. The Institute’s Think Tank publishes prescriptive and analytical papers from leading scholars and practitioners on the most important macroeconomic and structural reform issues facing China today. Founded in 2011 by Henry M. Paulson, Jr., the 74th Secretary of the Treasury and former Chief Executive Officer of Goldman Sachs, the Institute is based in Chicago and has offices in Washington, San Francisco, and Beijing. For more about the Paulson Institute, visit paulsoninstitute.org.