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Milan Declaration of the Global Alliance for Banking on Values (GABV): A Statement for Peace

On the occasion of its 16th Annual Meeting, in Padua and Milan (Italy), hosted by the Banca Ética Group, the Global Alliance for Banking on Values (GABV) has issued a declaration expressing solidarity with all those working to support victims of conflict and the pursuit of peace.

The Global Alliance for Banking on Values was established to put finance in the service of People and the Planet. Peace, and the stability that accompanies it, are prerequisites for finance to achieve this goal, to help address the major challenges of our time, such as climate change and social inequity, which are also part of the work of values-based banking. “There can be no peace and stability while financial institutions continue to finance the production and trade of weapons,” warns the GABV.

With this declaration, the network, which includes over 70 cooperative and ethical financial entities worldwide, commits to continue and intensify its efforts to promote peace, in all its forms, and calls on financial institutions around the world to follow its lead and divest from the arms industry.

From Africa to Europe and the Middle East, some GABV members operate in countries directly affected by armed conflict. They, their colleagues, and their clients are directly impacted by conflict. And these banks take pragmatic steps to reduce its worst impacts.

These values-based banks are particularly relevant in conflict zones because they sustain local economic activity and serve vulnerable and often displaced communities. They also play a crucial role in financing resilient and inclusive economies. As such, they understand the cost of conflict firsthand and offer a powerful example of how banking can be put to work in the service of peace and prosperity.

A report, commissioned by the GABV and Banca Etica, highlights the pivotal role of the global financial industry in the arms trade, thereby facilitating military conflicts. In contrast, the values-based banking movement has chosen not to finance the production or trade of weapons. Instead, it intentionally focuses on financing positive change for people and the planet, demonstrating that another banking approach is possible.

The GABV takes a humanitarian view and strongly condemns any form of violence, fighting, or war, under any circumstances, wherever it occurs. Sustainable conflict resolution can only take place through open dialogue, peaceful negotiations, and sincere collaboration as a means to build the trust that underpins peace.

The GABV concludes its declaration by calling on the financial industry to cease financing the production and trade of weapons and encourages institutions to introduce or expand existing policies that limit financing to the arms industry.

Milan Declaration of the Global Alliance for Banking on Values (GABV)

For more information on the 16th Summit of the Global Alliance for Banking on Values

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CIRIEC-International CIRIEC-España Social Economy Europe Ministerio de Trabajo y Economía Social Unión Europea