The social element in sustainable finance covers a wide range of lending and investment practices that are targeted towards generating economic returns while addressing societal challenges, such as access to basic services for minorities or marginalised groups, gender equality, and eradication of poverty. Addressing social dimensions can entail social elements linked to operations of the financed entity (e.g., labour conditions, equal pay) as well as social impacts caused by produced goods and services of the financed entity (e.g., health care services for low-income populations, gender-sensitive product portfolios). Social finance and impact investing are examples of concepts that are rapidly gaining traction to boost social benefits to the community.

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