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Special Feature on Social and Environmental Considerations Given in Our Business Activities

Mizuho recognizes its social responsibility as a global financial group to contribute to the sustainable development of society. Specifically, Mizuho aims to take a comprehensive approach to the development of its business activities that factors in economic, environmental, and social considerations. In order to advance these efforts given the specialized nature of the financial industry, Mizuho is an active participant in initiatives, such as "The United Nations Environmental Programme Finance Initiative (UNEP FI) " and "Principles for Financial Action towards a Sustainable Society."

When participating in loan operations for large–scale development and construction projects, MHBK has sought to ensure both environmental protection and economic development through financing operations that are based on The Equator Principles, which were adopted by the company in 2003 and provide a framework to ensure full consideration of the social and environmental impacts of such projects. In May 2014, MHBK became the first bank based in Asia to become chair bank of the Equator Principles Association.

In investment activities as well, MHTB and Group asset management company DIAM, are signatories to the UN Principles for Responsible Investment (PRI), which ensure that institutional investors incorporate environmental, social, and corporate governance issues into their decision–making processes. Based on the purpose of PRI, MHTB and DIAM have incorporated considerations related to the environment, society, and corporate governance as indicators into some of their funds, and take these into consideration when exercising their voting rights.

In considering environmental and social concerns in their activities, MHBK, MHTB, and MHSC have been promoting their "Heartful Project," which aims to make branches easier to use for all customers, regardless of age, gender, or disability, through the adoption of barrier–free layouts and universal design principles. In addition, these Group financial institutions have created a system for assessing the impact of product and service development as well as advertising and promotion activities on human rights. To reduce the environmental burden of its business activities, MHFG as a whole is promoting electric power conservation and initiatives to bring about a recycling–based society.

Initiatives for the Equator Principles

This section reports on Mizuho's involvement with the Equator Principles.