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Setting standards will help Asian social bond market to flourish

Issuance of debt to address local challenges is soaring, but rules needed

| East Asia
A girl covers her face with her clothes as a precautionary measure against COVID-19 in Gurugram, India: Social bonds offer an effective way to address the needs involved with poverty and other social challenges.   © NurPhoto/Getty Images

John Gandolfo is vice president and treasurer of the World Bank Group's International Finance Corp. and leads its treasury and mobilization team.

Since the start of the COVID-19 pandemic, social bonds, which raise funds from the capital market to support measures to address societal problems, have exploded in popularity, with the volume issued last year reaching nearly nine times the level seen in the pre-outbreak year of 2019.

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