(27 June 2021)
Korean Air has unveiled plans to issue environmental,
social and governance (ESG) bonds on 7 July 2021.
The bonds will have maturities of 1.5 years, 2
years and 3 years, and will amount to about KRW 200 billion
(approximately US$ 177.4 million).
The exact issue amount will be determined after
the results of forecasted demand become available on 29 June.
ESG bonds include green bonds, social bonds and
sustainability bonds, and should be used for eco-friendly projects
or to create social value.
Until now, ESG bonds have been issued
mainly by state-run companies, financial institutions and
manufacturing companies in Korea. Korean Air will be the first
Korean airline to issue these bonds.
To issue ESG bonds, the funding purpose needs to
be designated. ESG bonds issued by Korean Air are green bonds, and
raised funds will be used to purchase next-generation,
eco-friendly Boeing 787 aircraft.
Korean Air is currently operating a total of 10
Boeing 787-9s, and the airline plans to introduce Boeing 787-10s
as early as next year. This new aircraft has 25% higher fuel
efficiency per seat and emits 25% less carbon emissions than
Korea Investors Service (KIS), Korean Air’s ESG
bond evaluator, said Korean Air was given the highest grade for
the green bond due the airline’s excellent scores in terms of
project eligibility, transparency and management/operations
systems. KIS also evaluated that the Boeing 787, which will be
funded by the green bond, will greatly reduce greenhouse gas
Korean Air is making various efforts to enhance
ESG management. The airline has focused on reducing carbon
emissions by introducing next-generation, eco-friendly aircraft
and carrying out practices to improve fuel efficiency. The carrier
has also carried out many corporate social responsibility
activities such as sending emergency relief supplies to sites
devastated by catastrophic events in and outside of Korea.
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