One third of 2019 Swiss investment sustainable, study finds

ZURICH (Reuters) - Roughly one third of assets managed in Switzerland was invested sustainably in 2019, an increase of 62% from the previous year, a study published on Monday found.

The study by industry body the Swiss Sustainable Finance (SSF) association and the University of Zurich’s Center for Sustainable Finance and Private Wealth said it had counted assets invested according to ESG (environmental, social and governance) criteria.

And as the ESG trend gains ground, especially in Europe, it found such investments had reached 1.163 trillion Swiss francs ($1.21 trillion) in 2019 from 716.6 billion francs in 2018.

Institutional clients held the bulk of sustainably managed assets, accounting for some 79%.

SSF executive Sabine Doebeli told a virtual press conference there was work to be done, even though sustainable investing has achieved mainstream status.

“Our goal is to make Switzerland clearly a sustainable financial centre,” she said.

Reporting by Oliver Hirt; writing by Brenna Hughes Neghaiwi; editing by Barbara Lewis