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Questions and answers

Sustainability governance

Strong governance is important for successful progress. We have a robust sustainability governance model, with clear roles and mandates on various levels. This model determines how we set our strategy and work to integrate sustainability into our business.

The Board of Directors
The Board of Directors is responsible for establishing a strategy for corporate sustainability and an organisation to execute this strategy. The Board approves SEB's strategy and business plan, including sustainability considerations, the Corporate Sustainability Policy, thematic policies and the Sustainability Report.

The President and CEO
The President and CEO is responsible for execution of the sustainability strategy and implementation of the governance structure set by the Board.

The Group Executive Sustainability Committee (GESC)
The Group Executive Sustainability Committee (GESC), chaired by the President, manages the execution of the sustainability strategy.

Sustainable Banking
Sustainable Banking is responsible for coordinating and driving the overall corporate sustainability agenda. This is done in close collaboration with the Divisions and Group Staff and Support functions. This team if headed by the Chief Sustainability Officer who is also part of SEB's extended Group Executive Committee.

Sustainability Product Committee
The Sustainability Product Committee decides on the right for SEB units to use any sustainability-reference in the marketing or distribution of products or services.

SEB's Divisions and employees
SEB's Divisions and employees – each Head of Division, Head of Group Support function and Head of Group Staff is responsible for making sure everything is in place to meet the corporate sustainability objectives, strategy and policies.

Description of SEB's sustainability governance.

SEB sets and publishes targets and outcome for areas where we have the most significant impacts. Our ambition is to further increase transparency and disclosures of progress. These efforts are continuously aligned with future national and international requirements and expectations. In April 2021, SEB joined the UN-initiated Net-Zero Banking Alliance through which we commit to set targets and align our attributable emissions from our lending and investment portfolios with pathways to net-zero by 2050 or sooner.

The targets and KPIs are linked to the areas of sustainable financing, sustainable investments, employees, business ethics and our own environmental impact. Moreover, they are being integrated into long-term incentive programmes for senior managers. Among the most important KPIs and targets are:

  • to reduce our carbon credit exposure in the energy portfolio with 45–60 per cent to 2030
  • to increase our sustainability activities 6–8 times to 2030
  • to reach the NZBA-related interim 2030 targets for six industry sectors in our credit portfolio

Our ambitions and goals

See sustainability-related targets and KPIs in SEB's Annual and Sustainability Report 2023

SEB's sustainability policy framework covers the Corporate Sustainability Policy, thematic policies and sector policies. The framework provides guidelines on best practice and on the international conventions and standards that the bank encourages companies to follow.

Among the important policies are:

  • Corporate Sustainability policy (adopted by the Board)
  • Human Rights Policy (adopted by the Board )
  • Environmental policy (adopted by the Board )

Sector policies are approved by the Board's Risk and Capital Committee.

  • Agriculture, Fishing, Aquaculture and Animal Welfare
  • Arms and Defence
  • Forestry
  • Fossil Fuels
  • Gambling
  • Mining and Metals
  • Real Estate and Construction
  • Renewable Energy
  • Shipping
  • Tobacco
  • Transportation

Moreover, SEB has several other group-wide policies such as the Code of Conduct, Anti-corruption policy, Tax policy and Inclusion and Diversity policy.

Our sustainability-related policies.

Board of directors

Yes, the composition of the Board shall adhere to applicable laws and regulations and to the Policy on Suitability, Diversity and Composition of the Board of Directors, adopted by the Board. The Nomination Committee shall ensure diversity within the Board in terms of educational and professional background, gender, age and geographical provenance of the directors.

Independent in relation to the Bank: Yes

Independent in relation to major shareholders: No

The Swedish Corporate Governance Code states that a majority of the members of the board are to be independent of the company and its management. At least two members must also be independent of the company's major shareholders*, which means that it is possible for major shareholders of Swedish companies to appoint a majority of members with whom they have close ties. This is in line with the positive view of active and responsible ownership expressed in the preparatory documents to the Swedish Companies Act.

The chair of the Board of SEB is not a member of the executive management of SEB and is therefore independent in relation to SEB. However, the chair is also vice chair of the Board in Investor AB, which is a major shareholder of SEB and therefore non-independent in relation to major shareholders.

*Major shareholders are defined as those controlling 10% or more of the shares or votes in the company.

SEB does not have a supervisory board.

Corporate Governance at SEB.

Please find information for each board member in the Annual and Sustainability Report 2023, p 63–74.


Please find information about remuneration to the Board and Group Executive Committee in SEB's Annual and Sustainability Report 2023, p 63–74.

Sustainability key performance indicators (KPI's) are integrated in remuneration for members of SEB's Group Executive Committee (GEC), for managers who report to the GEC and for other eligible positions. The models for individual variable remuneration are based on financial and non-financial KPI's. Non-financial goals take into account factors such as customer satisfaction, compliance and sustainability performance related to, for example, the bank's own environmental impact and integration of sustainability risks into the business model. Since 2022, SEB's established sustainability ambitions and goals are part of the criteria for potential allocation of the programmes, as applicable.

Yes, in the largest variable remuneration programme, for all SEB employees, sustainability is, since 2022, considered.

The largest variable remuneration programme is the SEB All Employee Programme 2023 (AEP), which covers essentially all employees. The programme is linked to SEB’s business plan and consist of the financial targets for return on equity and SEB’s cost development, which are also communicated externally, and the non-financial targets for customer satisfaction and sustainability. The outcome for 2023 was determined to be 70.7 per cent of the maximum amount, which in Sweden is SEK 75,000.

Business Ethics

We engage with customers on a regular basis on ethical aspects, including anti-corruption, in order to understand their challenges and opportunities so that we can make the appropriate credit considerations and to be a better business partner. In financing and credit granting, the area of anti-corruption risks are integrated in the know your customer process. Within asset management, our funds invest in companies that respect international principles and guidelines, such as the UN Global Compact and the OECD Guidelines for Multinational Enterprises.

Yes, SEB's Code of Conduct (up-dated annually) describes our way of working and guides us in our business relationships. The Code helps us in our efforts to always act responsibly and ethically in order to build sound and long-term relationships with customers and other stakeholders. This is also our policy on ethical matters.

The Code of Conduct covers areas such as responsible customer advice, our approach to tax, how we handle complaints, combat money laundering, bribery, terrorist financing etc. All employees of the SEB Group – in all markets where we operate – and all those who represent companies within the Group, including members of the board, independent contractors and consultants are covered by the Code.

Code of Conduct .

Code of Conduct for Supplier to SEB Group.

SEB has a whistleblowing process for reporting irregularities. If an employee or other person should discover possible unethical or unlawful behaviour, we offer several ways of reporting the observations, among them the anonymous and independent digital service WhistleB. All reported incidents or circumstances are promptly investigated and, when applicable, reported to the bank’s CEO and the Audit and Compliance Committee.

SEB’s whistleblowing process

SEB offers various training programs for employees, including an education package with e-learning, films and working material. Five digital training sessions are mandatory for all employees – Code of Conduct, Cyber Security, Anti-Money Laundering and combat of terrorism financing, General Data Protection Regulation GDPR) and Fraud Prevention. At year-end 2023, 97 per cent of our employees had completed the mandatory trainings.

Data ethics and privacy

SEB has adopted an ethics policy, Customer Data Ethics Policy, for customer data which sets the framework for responsible handling of customer data, data-driven innovation and the use of AI. The policy consists of eight principles for responsible business development and innovation that will protect customers and safeguard confidence in the bank.

The policy stipulates that the fundamental purpose of collecting and processing customer data must be to favour the stakeholders. Customers must be able to rely on SEB handling customer data in a careful and respectful manner while accepting responsibility for its handling of customer data.

SEB must strive to be able to report its use of data sources, models and AI as well as explaining how AI-based decisions are made. The policy also requires SEB not to sell customer data to a third party for commercial use. However, SEB may share data with a third party in order to develop services that create clear value for customers, when customers have requested this or when it is required by law. SEB has a specially appointed data protection officer.

Customer Data Ethics Policy (pdf)

 SEB's processing of personal data

Financial crime and cyber security

We work in a structured way to protect the bank from money laundering attempts, cyber-attacks, sabotage, intrusion attempts, crime and financing of terrorism. We believe that a sound know-your-customer (KYC) process is the best method of prevention and we apply enhanced due diligence for customers, products and countries, where there is a perceived risk that SEB is used for money laundering and financing of terrorism.

Financial crime prevention in SEB

SEB has strict guidelines towards unethical influence, whether within business or society. All actions and decisions shall comply with laws, regulations and other external rules as well as with internal instructions and policies. The SEB Group shall comply with relevant external and internal restrictions (observing transparency and appropriateness) regarding giving and receiving gifts as well as unacceptable benefits, in order to avoid any allegation of bribery or corruption. The SEB Group shall not support political parties through donations or otherwise.

Our view on lobbying

Supply chain

We expect our suppliers to conduct services in compliance with applicable laws and regulations of the countries in which they operate, manufacture or conduct business. We also expect them to act responsibly from a sustainability perspective, in line with the UN Guiding Principles on Business and Human Rights. These expectations and more are found in SEB’s Code of Conduct for Suppliers.

How we work with suppliers

Code of Conduct for Suppliers.

Contact us

SEB's sustainability experts have extensive knowledge in areas such as climate and financing solutions, sustainable investments and regulatory development in the European Union.


Reach out to our sustainability contacts