Two IOSCO speeches at COP26 focus on new ISSB

  • IOSCO (International Organization of Securities Commissions) (dark gray) Image
  • ISSB (International Sustainability Standards Board) (blue) Image

05 Nov 2021

The International Organization of Securities Commissions (IOSCO) has released the transcripts of two speeches of the Chair of the IOSCO Board and the Chair IOSCO Sustainable Finance Task Force given at the Green Horizon Summit of COP26 in Glasgow.

The Chair of the IOSCO Sustainable Finance Task Force, Erik Thedéen, noted that IOSCO identified the IFRS Foundation as the vehicle to develop a global baseline for investor-oriented sustainability standards given its well-tested governance structure, its best-in-class reputation in setting international reporting standards and its proven record of transparent and inclusive due process. He stressed:

The ISSB global standards are the right tool to respond to the existing ‘alphabet soup’ of voluntary sustainability disclosures. They can drive much-needed international consistency and comparability in sustainability-related information, laying the groundwork towards high quality mandatory reporting.

Ashley Alder, Chair of the IOSCO Board, gave the keynote speech at the summit. He stressed that the new board under the IFRS Foundation umbrella offers the most credible mechanism for creating a baseline of disclosure standards, enabling a confusing picture to be superseded by a properly aligned global approach. He commented:

Crucially, the ISSB will develop a comprehensive global baseline of corporate climate disclosure standards which meet the information needs of investors. They will enable investors to align their investment strategies with the global transition to net zero and will also mitigate the ever-present risk of greenwashing. [...] The baseline disclosure standard can also cut a clear pathway to the adoption of a mandatory standard if jurisdictions choose to take that route. This is important because, in order to hold corporates properly accountable, the standard should be sufficiently enforceable. It is also crucial that it is an open standard which allows jurisdictions to build on the baseline to accommodate their own sustainability needs and circumstances.

Both speakers also stressed that IOSCO plans to thoroughly assess the ISSB proposals to ensure they meet the needs of investors before deciding whether IOSCO can endorse them. If IOSCO's expectations are met, the IOSCO Board would then endorse the new standards for over 130 market regulators.

Please click to access the two speeches on the IOSCO website:

Earlier, IOSCO also released a statement welcoming the creation of the ISSB.

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