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ABN Amro: Green bond issuance reaches record €17B in 1st 2 months of 2019

Global green bonds issuance nearly tripled in the first two months of the year, marking the best start to a year on record, according to a report by ABN Amro.

Gross issuance of euro- and U.S. dollar-denominated green bonds of at least 250 million in size reached 17 billion in January through February, surpassing the 6 billion issuance in the year-ago period. In February alone, green bonds issuance reached nearly 7 billion.

By sector, corporates issued 53% of green bonds so far this year, followed by financial institutions with a 29% share of the total issuance. Sovereigns and related issuers accounted for 18% of issuance.

Finland's OP Financial Group launched its debut green senior unsecured bond in February, while Spain's Iberdrola SA issued another perpetual bond.

By country, the U.S. continued to lead total green bond issuance, followed by France, where BNP Paribas SA made its third green benchmark deal, and Poland, where the government raised €2 billion from its dual-tranche bond issuance last month.

Governments ramped up green deals, boosted by the Polish bond offering, as well as Indonesia's second green sukuk, or Islamic bond, issue of $750 million in February.

Spain has also signaled an intention to tap green bonds to fund its energy investments, while Sweden announced plans to issue green bonds this year.