Momentum is building for consistent rules on sustainability reporting across international stock exchanges
A campaign to create uniform sustainability reporting for companies listed on global stock exchanges has taken a step forwards with a proposal by the US-based environmental coalition Ceres via the World Federation of Exchanges.
Ceres, with input from more than 100 institutional investors – including BlackRock, the world’s biggest asset manager – has published a series of recommendations for integrating environmental, social and governance (ESG) disclosure requirements into listing rules.
The goal is both to promote ESG values and to make a more consistent international investment arena, so that companies are not left at a competitive disadvantage by having to disclose more than rivals trading in other jurisdictions.
Tracey Rembert, senior manager of investor engagement at Ceres, says publication of the report reflects how vital most investors now consider sustainability reporting to be. “They want more comparability and consistency and many more companies reporting because at the moment there are numerous gaps even within sectors between those that are putting out information and those that aren’t.”
One key recommendation is not just disclosure of the main ESG issues that are most material to a specific business, but a detailed analysis. “The message was: don’t just tell us climate change, human rights...