Working Groups

Working Groups

The objective of the working groups is to provide a clear channel for TMG members to expand their knowledge and network in various areas of interest through the tapping of members’ internal expertise.

Based on the Secretariat’s suggestions and members’ feedback, every 1-2 years, the Board of Directors agrees on a list of 2-3 key topics of common interest to be the focus of working groups. Working groups are then formed with subject matter experts from each bank. The Secretariat facilitates communication over the course of the year, allowing members to exchange with their peers and to decide together on the scope and timeline of the work they want to achieve.

In the last Annual General Meeting, which took place in March 2023, it was agreed that the Secretariat will continue facilitating the work of the Chief Economists Roundtable group and the Sustainability Advisory Group.

The Chief Economists Roundtable is formed by representatives from our member organizations. This group was created in 2021 during the COVID-19 crisis. It has met regularly since then to comment on the macroeconomic situation of the countries our members represent and the impact on the MSMEs they serve. 

After discussing the measures put in place to support MSMEs during the health crisis and the recovery phase, this group also focused on better understanding how public banks are measuring the impact of their activities. Virtual and in-person workshops were organized in 2022, and a paper with the findings of this work is set to be published in September 2023. 

The Sustainability Advisory Group was formally created in 2023, and will continue the work done in the past two years, ensuring that The Montreal Group’s work is aligned with the 2030 Agenda. It will advise the Secretariat on the work plan, with actions to support members in the adoption of the best internal and external sustainability practices.

In 2021 and 2022, a Key Topic Group on Sustainability met regularly to design a Self-Assessment Sustainability Tool with the support of external consultants. This tool allows members to assess their organizations in their journey to sustainability.

Experts from Non-Financial Services Departments also met to discuss how to best support MSMEs, and the Secretariat organized a CEO Gathering in London dedicated to learning more about how leading organizations are adopting sustainability practices. Members had the opportunity to meet with the British Business Bank, institution that joined The Montreal Group in 2023, as well as NatWest, the OECD, UNEP FI, the SME Climate Hub, the UK Parliament and the Banking for Net-Zero Alliance.

  • 2021-2022 Sustainability Sounding Board
  • 2021-2022 Non-Financial Services for Sustainability
  • 2020-2022 Chief Economists Covid-19 Roundtable
  • 2020-2021 Non-Financial Services for MSMEs during COVID-19
  • 2019-2020 Management training for Scaleups
  • 2019-2020 Advanced Analytics for Risk Management
  • 2017-2019 Scaling Up Mid-Sized Firms
  • 2016-2019 Online Services and Digitalization
  • 2015-2017 Innovative Products and Services
  • 2014-2017 Green Financing
  • 2014-2016 Risk Management2014-2015 Cross Guarantees
  • 2013-2014 Financing Intangible Assets, Key Performance Indicators, Loan Guarantees

Created in May 2019, the one-off benchmark calls are a special initiative where a call on a selected topic of interest is facilitated by the Secretariat for members to exchange information and share concerns and questions. Afterwards, members are encouraged to continue with the conversation on a bilateral basis.

Sustainability is at the core of everything we do at The Montreal Group


In 2021, both the Annual General Meeting and The Montreal Group’s CEO Gathering, were dedicated to discussing the role of Public Banks in the 2030 Agenda and in Mobilizing Sustainable Finance for SMEs. Following these gatherings, the Board agreed to:

  • Place the subject of sustainability at the core of TMG activities
  • Partner with key actors in sustainability to support TMG members, both in becoming more sustainable as organizations and in developing a robust financial and non-financial offering to support MSMEs in their journey to sustainability.
  • Propose new working groups for banks to learn from each other

As a result, The Montreal Group partnered with leading organizations such as the United Nations Environment Programme Finance Initiative (UNEP FI) and UN Women to offer training opportunities to our members, and joined Finance in Common (FiC), a coalition of more than 500 public development banks and key stakeholders.

As a member of the Executive Committee of FiC, TMG endorsed the Paris Development Bank’s Statement on Gender Equality and Women Empowerment and joined its working group. In addition, The Montreal Group became a knowledge partner of the OECD Platform on Financing SMEs for Sustainability.