The concept of green finance stands as a beacon for steering businesses towards sustainable and environmentally responsible practices through incentivised financial investments. In the pursuit of unravelling the complexities of green finance, “The Routledge Handbook of Green Finance,” edited by Othmar M Lehner, Theresia Harrer, Hanna Silvola and Olaf Weber, brings together a diverse group of scholars and industry specialists. This authoritative compilation provides a comprehensive exploration of green finance, examining its defining characteristics, fundamental principles, and operational mechanisms.

Within this vast landscape, the intricacies of green finance in China unfold, shaped by a myriad of government and private actors influencing its implementation. Chapter 16, titled “Green Finance in China: System, practice, and international role,” delves into the evolution of China’s green finance system. The chapter explores how Chinese stakeholders leverage various green finance tools, including green bonds and credit, and evaluates China’s global role in shaping green finance standards. Additionally, it evaluates China’s engagement in green finance practices abroad, with a specific focus on initiatives like the Belt and Road Initiative.

While China boasts one of the world’s most extensive applications of green finance, a paradox emerges—the “Panda-Dragon paradox.” Despite its leadership in green finance, China remains a significant supporter of coal investments. This paradox raises questions about the alignment of China’s domestic and international green finance efforts.

The handbook, drawing from the expertise of Griffith Asia Institute Director Christoph Nedopil Wang and Mathias Lund Larsen, positions itself as an indispensable reference. Tailored for a diverse audience, including scholars, researchers, students, professionals, regulators, and policymakers, this handbook offers valuable insights into a rapidly evolving and increasingly relevant field. As we navigate the challenges of sustainability, understanding China’s role in green finance becomes pivotal for fostering a greener and more sustainable future.

This article summarises a book chapter written by Griffith Asia Institute Director, Christoph Nedopil Wang and Mathias Lund Larsen, 2023, ‘Green Finance in China: System, practice, and international role’ in Othmar M Lehner, Theresia Harrer, Hanna Silvola, Olaf Weber (eds) The Routledge Handbook of Green Finance, Taylor and Francis, London.