UKEF: Environmental, Social and Human Rights risk management

We support exporters and project developers in receipt of UK exports to manage project-related environmental, social and human rights risks and impacts.

Environmental, Social and Human Rights policy

As part of our support to UK exporters and in line with our international commitments, we identify and, where appropriate, conduct due diligence to assess the Environmental, Social and Human Rights (ESHR) risks and impacts of projects we are asked to support overseas.

The Policy and Practice on ESHR Due Diligence and Monitoring statement informs exporters, banks, project sponsors and other interested parties on our arrangements for:

  • identifying ESHR risks and impacts and carrying out due diligence to be satisfied that, as far as practically possible, we support projects which should be constructed and operated in line with relevant standards
  • monitoring alignment of projects with relevant ESHR standards over the life of UKEF support

Our note on Human Rights and Social Risks and Impacts describes UKEF’s approach to identifying and managing social and human rights risks and impacts of projects we are asked to support overseas.

The ESHR flowchart shows the processes we follow when considering environmental, health, safety, social and human rights impacts.

The Export Guarantees Advisory Council advises the Secretary of State for International Trade on our operations, including ESHR risks.

UKEF is also part of the OECD Export Credit Agency (ECA) Environmental and Social Practitioners group, which developed and maintains a guidance note on good practice in the use of consultants by ECAs.

The Equator Principles

We adopted the Equator Principles in 2016. We are currently implementing Equator Principles 4. This is a global framework for ESHR decision-making in financing projects.

Our announcements

UKEF supports UK companies export all over the world.

Category A projects

Category A projects are those with the potential to have significant adverse environmental and/or social impacts.

We publish details whenever a Category A project is under consideration, and we publish additional information when a Category A project is supported.

Category B projects

Category B projects are those where potential environmental and social impacts are few in number and site-specific. Public disclosure of Category B projects is not required by the OECD Common Approaches, but UKEF has pledged to disclose all new Category B cases for which we have provided support.

ESHR risk and impact categorisations

We publish data on new and existing ESHR risk and impact categorisations and contingent liabilities as part of our Annual Report and Accounts:

Published 23 January 2018
Last updated 19 January 2021 + show all updates
  1. Edited links to collections for Category A projects under consideration and Category A projects supported. Added Category B notices paragraph and link to Category B projects supported notices collection.

  2. Updated to include link to report on UKEF's implementation of the Equator Principles (1 April 2019 to 31 March 2020)

  3. First published.