11 Dec 2023

VEON’s Mobilink Bank Participates in COP28, Emphasizes the Role of Gender Inclusivity in Climate Finance

Dubai, 11 December 2023: VEON Ltd. (NASDAQ: VEON, Euronext Amsterdam: VEON), a global digital operator that provides converged connectivity and online services, announces that Mobilink Bank, its financial services operating company in Pakistan, participated in the to the 28th United Nations Climate Change Conference (COP28) in Dubai, UAE. Mobilink Bank’s Chief Operating Officer Haaris Mahmood Chaudhary spoke at a panel on gender equality and gender-responsive finance to combat climate change in Pakistan. 

Mobilink Bank, Pakistan’s leading digital microfinance bank with over 45 million registered users, is among the first adopters of climate finance in Pakistan. Mobilink Bank has invested over PKR1.6 billion ($5.6 million) in green financing, primarily focusing on loans for solar applications in agriculture to promote renewable energy. Mobilink Bank is also one of the strongest advocates of gender diversity and inclusion in Pakistan, having allocated over PKR12 billion ($42.2 million) of subsidized financing to more than 66 thousand women entrepreneurs. It continues to provide digital, financial, and agritech solutions to farmers, enhancing sustainable agricultural practices with a gender-inclusive focus. 

Speaking at a panel organized by UN Women Regional Office of Asia and the Pacific and Ministry of Climate Change and Environmental Coordination of Pakistan during COP28, Chaudhary emphasized the intersection between gender-inclusivity and climate initiatives. 

“It is often the most disadvantaged parts of the society that bear the brunt of disasters, including climate change. Women- a highly influential, yet underserved segment, are more susceptible to the drastic effects of climate change, and we aim at narrowing the gender gap to provide inclusive opportunities for them for holistic economic development. We believe that there is a unique opportunity to address many challenges at once: Financial community, especially when empowered with the digital tools that we have as a VEON Group company, can move the needle significantly in combatting climate change and building communities’ resilience by gender-inclusive practices.” said Chaudhary in his remarks on the COP28 panel. 

VEON’s comprehensive approach to disasters was recently recognized at the World Communication Awards, where VEON received the Crisis Response award for the efforts of Jazz, JazzCash and Mobilink Bank in the midst of, and during the aftermath of, the devastating floods in Pakistan in August 2022, as well as for Banglalink’s support for communities facing Cyclone Mocha in Bangladesh, and Kyivstar’s work in keeping Ukraine connected through the war. 

VEON Group’s sustainability initiatives, including in areas of diversity and inclusion as well as climate action, are outlined in its latest Integrated Report for 2022, available on the company website. 

About VEON 
VEON is a digital operator that provides converged connectivity and digital services to nearly 160 million customers. Operating across six countries that are home to more than 7% of the world’s population, VEON is transforming lives through technology-driven services that empower individuals and drive economic growth. Headquartered in Amsterdam, VEON is listed on NASDAQ and Euronext. For more information visit: www.veon.com

About Mobilink Bank 
Mobilink Bank is Pakistan’s leading digital microfinance bank with over 45 million registered users including 16+ million monthly active mobile users. With a hybrid model that combines traditional microfinance with mobile/digital banking technologies, the bank now operates with over 100 branches and more than 220,000 branchless banking agents, and provides a USSD (GSM) based digital channel offering savings, micro enterprise (MSME) loans, small housing loans, remittances, collection (utility bills and loan installments), mobile wallets, insurance, G2P, B2B & B2P payments; thus, playing a leading role in the promotion of financial inclusion. For more information visit: www.mobilinkbank.com 

This release contains “forward-looking statements,” as the phrase is defined in Section 27A of the U.S. Securities Act of 1933, as amended, and Section 21E of the U.S. Securities Exchange Act of 1934, as amended. Forward-looking statements are not historical facts, and include statements relating to, among other things, VEON’s commercial offerings. Forward-looking statements are inherently subject to risks and uncertainties, many of which VEON cannot predict with accuracy and some of which VEON might not anticipate. The forward-looking statements contained in this release speak only as of the date of this release. VEON does not undertake to publicly update, except as required by U.S. federal securities laws, any forward-looking statement to reflect events or circumstances after such dates or to reflect the occurrence of unanticipated events.

Hande Asik 
Group Director of Communication 

TUVA Partners
Julian Tanner

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