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France's AXA to step up investments in green projects to $11 billion by 2020

FILE PHOTO: Logos of France's biggest insurer Axa are seen on a building in Nanterre, near Paris, March 8, 2016. REUTERS/Christian Hartmann/File Photo

PARIS (Reuters) - French insurer AXA announced on Tuesday it would quadruple its investments in environmentally-friendly projects by 2020 to 9 billion euros ($10.60 billion) and disinvest further from the coal industry.

“In 2015 AXA committed to reach 3 billion euros in green investments by 2020. Given that this target has already been reached, the Group has decided to quadruple its original target and reach 12 billion euros by 2020,” the insurer said.

French President Emmanuel Macron is hosting a climate summit this week where he will press rich countries to increase financing for dealing with climate change and urge investors worldwide to turn their backs on polluters in a bid to accelerate efforts to combat global warming.

With respect to disinvesting from the coal industry, Axa will target companies that derive more than 30 percent of their revenue from coal. It also said it would not insure any new coal mines or oil sands projects, including associated pipeline businesses.

($1 = 0.8488 euros)

Reporting by Maya Nikolaeva and Matthieu Protard; editing by Richard Lough, Greg Mahlich