The IFRS Foundation have announced today that they will form a working group to accelerate convergence in global sustainability reporting standards focused on enterprise value. The first meeting of the working group is expected to take place in April 2021.
The working group will be chaired by the IFRS Foundation and include participation by:
· International Accounting Standards Board (IASB)
· Task Force on Climate-related Financial Disclosures (TCFD)
· The Value Reporting Foundation (representing a soon to be merged IIRC and SASB)
· Climate Disclosure Standards Board (CDSB)
· the World Economic Forum (WEF)
· IOSCO will participate in the group as an observer,
The news release also notes that while the Global Reporting Initiative (GRI) will not be part of the working group they will be engaged with, along with the Carbon Disclosure Project (CDP).
The working group will provide technical recommendations, including further development of the prototype built on the TCFD recommendations, as a potential basis for the new Sustainability Standards Board (SSB) to build on existing initiatives and develop standards for climate-related reporting and other sustainability topics.
The group will also review how technical expertise and content might potentially be transitioned to the SSB under the IFRS Foundation’s governance structure. The aim being to consolidate and reduce fragmentation in sustainability reporting standards.
As previously noted the IFRS Foundation envisages that sustainability reporting standards issued by the SSB will provide a global sustainability reporting baseline that would allow for greater comparability and consistency of application of the standards, while also providing flexibility for coordination on additional jurisdictional and multi-stakeholder reporting requirements (a 'building blocks' approach).
With this in mind the IFRS Trustees will commence work with IOSCO and relevant organisations to explore the establishment of a multi-stakeholder expert consultative committee within the IFRS Foundation structure. The consultative committee would be tasked with formalising and streamlining the SSB’s engagement with the relevant global stakeholders involved in sustainability reporting.
Finally the IFRS Foundation have announced that Clara Barby (CEO of the Impact Management Project) will take partial leave from the Impact Management Project (IMP) to be the project lead for the IFRS Foundation’s sustainability project.