Blue bonds studied to help oceans
The Public Debt Management Office (PDMO) is studying the feasibility of issuing "blue bonds", with proceeds going to support ocean and marine resources as well as the sustainable development of Thailand's seas, which serve as a massive tourism draw.
Patricia Mongkhonvanit, director-general of PDMO, said blue bonds are part of a sustainable development effort in line with the UN's Sustainable Development Goals (SDG). Previously PDMO issued green bonds, social bonds and sustainability bonds to achieve sustainable development goals.
A blue bond is a debt security issued to raise capital to finance the implementation of SDGs related to the ocean, the seas and marine resources as well as a transition towards a sustainable ocean economy.
An ocean economy, also known as a "blue economy", refers to all sectors of the economy that have a direct or indirect connection to the ocean. The ocean economy consists of a broad array of economic activities related to the seas and oceans, presenting numerous opportunities for social and economic development and diversification of coastal businesses. This includes opportunities arising from traditional marine activities, marine-oriented information and science sectors, tourism and conservation projects.
Mrs Patricia said the blue bond initiative to save and sustain the development of Thailand's seas is quite challenging and plays a crucial part in Thailand's tourism, contributing up to 12% of the country's GDP.
She said the key challenge in blue bond issuance is to find projects that align with the concept that are large enough.
PDMO is discussing this issue with related agencies, said Mrs Patricia.
She said blue bonds differ from classic bonds where proceeds are used to invest in various infrastructure projects based on the return on investment or yield.