June 2016 Sustainable Stock Exchange Highlights

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SSE INITIATIVE NEWS

Tanzania’s Capital Markets Align Interests with UN Initiative for Sustainability and Transparency
June 29, 2016
“We are delighted to be a partner in this noble cause as we encourage businesses and investors to be sensitive on matters that are necessary in this era and generations to come, such as sustainability of the current and future societies,” said Mr. Marwa, CEO of the Dar es Salaam Stock Exchange, about joining the SSE as a Partner Exchange.

Dubai Financial Market (DFM) Joins SSE Initiative as Partner Exchange
June 15, 2016
DFM, citing its belief in the importance of transparency and governance to fully evaluate a company’s efficiency and sustainability, will be the 55th Partner Exchange and take part in the upcoming Global Dialogue in September.

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CONSULTATIONS AND DEADLINES

SASB Consultation on Provisional Sustainability Accounting Standards
Comments due July 6, 2016
The public is invited to comment on three documents – the SASB Rules of Procedure, the SASB Conceptual Framework, and proposed changes to its Sustainable Industry Classification System™ (SICS™).

Brazilian Association of Capital Market Investors (Amec) Stewardship Code Consultation
Comments due July 15, 2016
The draft Amec Stewardship Code provides principles, mechanisms and policies that guide investors in all governance-related issues.

First Set of GRI Sustainability Reporting Standards Released for Public Comment
Comments due July 17, 2016
The GRI continues to accept comments on its first set of exposure drafts of the GRI Standards, a restructured approach to the G4 Guidelines and Implementation Manual. It includes three ‘universal’ standards and 35 ‘topic-specific’ standards developed to enhance the quality and comparability of sustainability reporting.

US Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC) Seeks Investor Comments on Sustainability Disclosures and Risks Through Recent Concept Release
Comments due July 21, 2016
The SEC’s April 2016 Concept Release seeks public comment on a wide variety of disclosure topics including on sustainability and climate risk disclosure.

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UPCOMING WEBINARS AND EVENTS

Shanghai Roundtable on 21st Century Fiduciary Duty with Focus on Asia
July 14, 2016 – Shanghai
BNP Paribas will host a roundtable, convened by PRI and UNEP Finance Initiative, in Shanghai on the ESG investing landscape in five Asian markets, including discussion on the barriers to responsible investment and ESG integration.

UNCTAD World Investment Forum 2016: Investing in Sustainable Development
July 17 – 21, 2016 – Nairobi
Held in Nairobi, Kenya, this free event is the largest global platform for action on investment for sustainable development, convening thousands of participants in a discussion of the challenges, opportunities, and policy solutions needed to meet the Sustainable Development Goals.

SSE Executive Dialogue on Green Finance
July 20, 2016 – Nairobi
Held in Nairobi, Kenya, this SSE Executive Dialogue will address key elements of the new global agenda on green finance and evaluate what role stock exchanges can play. This takes place within the World Investment Forum 2016 and UNCTAD14.

SSE 2016 Global Dialogue
September 6, 2016 – Singapore
Held in Singapore, alongside PRI in Person, this event will enable stock exchanges and stakeholders to meet and evaluate how new global sustainable development and green finance policy agendas will impact capital markets. Registration now open, register here.

PRI in Person
September 6 – 8, 2016 – Singapore
In the PRI’s 10th anniversary year, this PRI in Person will be bringing the world’s leading responsible investment event to Asia for the first time since 2008. PRI in Person will take place in Singapore. Register here.

6th Annual Africa Environmental, Social, and Governance Forum - Johannesburg
October 12-13, 2016
Held at the Johannesburg Stock Exchange, the 6th annual Africa ESG Forum is designed to bring together asset owners and investment managers to advance ESG integration and responsible investment in Africa.

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LISTING STANDARDS AND GUIDANCE

SGX Releases Sustainability Reporting Guide and Comply or Explain Rule; Will Provide Training to Companies
June 20, 2016
Following the results of a consultation earlier in the year, the Singapore Exchange has released sustainability reporting requirements for issuers. All SGX listed companies must publish a sustainability report at least once a year according to a reporting framework of their choice.

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GENERAL NEWS

US Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC) to Draft Rule Requiring Detailed Disclosure on Board Diversity
June 28, 2016
While speaking at the International Corporate Governance Network’s annual conference, Chair Mary Jo White announced that the SEC is reviewing the agency’s current rules on boardroom diversity disclosure, citing the importance of diversified perspectives.

SEC to Require Disclosure of Payments to Governments by Resource Extraction Companies
June 27, 2016
The US Securities and Exchange Commission, as required by the Dodd-Frank financial reform law, has required drilling and mining companies to report payments to foreign governments for extracting oil, gas and minerals by 2019. (pay wall)

PRI and UN Global Compact Launch Guide on Anti-Corruption Engagement
June 20, 2016
The evidence-based guide for investors and companies on anti-bribery and corruption engagement dialogue presents findings from engagement with 34 investors and 32 multinational companies from 2013-2015.

Securities and Exchange Commission Approves New Stock Exchange in the United States
June 17, 2016
The SEC voted to approve a plan by IEX Group Inc. to launch a stock exchange designed with a “speed bump” intended to slow the pace of trading and ‘level the playing field’ among investors.

International Capital Markets Association (ICMA) Launches Guidelines For Social Bonds
June 17, 2016
The ICMA revealed new guidelines, to be used alongside the Green Bond Principles (GBPs), for social bonds at its annual general meeting, citing demand from existing and potential issuers who wanted clarification on expectations around social bonds.

University of Cambridge Rules out Coal and Tar Sands Investments
June 17, 2016
The largest endowment fund of any UK educational institution will soon be incorporating ESG considerations, including climate change risk, into its management strategy.

Green Bond Principles Updated
June 16, 2016
Based on input from a 2015 consultation with investors, underwriters, issuers and NGOs, the International Capital Markets Association (ICMA) issued a 2016 update to the Green Bond Principles (GBP), including a new social bonds annex.

World Federation of Exchanges (WFE) Releases Second Annual Sustainability Survey of Membership
June 15, 2016
The report found that more than 90% of responding exchanges, representing over 50% of the membership of the WFE, are demonstrating a commitment to sustainability, primarily through educational initiatives for issuers and investors or through products such as green bonds.

Investor Group Representing $4.8tn Pledges Support for Corporate Human Rights Benchmark (CHRB)
June 15, 2016
Endorsed by over 80 investors, the CHRB is the first-ever ranking of major companies based on the UN Guiding Principles Reporting Framework. It is designed to encourage companies to properly manage human rights risks.

Securities and Exchange Commission’s Investor Advisory Committee Calls For Better ESG Reporting Guidance
June 13, 2016
Following the SEC’s recent concept release on ‘Business and Financial Disclosure Required by Regulation S-K,’ the SEC’s Investor Advisory Committee recommends the SEC create an analytical framework that outlines the qualitative ESG factors that could inform corporate materiality disclosure. (pay wall)

Calvert Releases Study Highlighting Alpha-Generating Potential of ESG Integration
June 13, 2016
Calvert Investment Management and George Serafeim of Harvard Business School have partnered to release, The Financial and Societal Benefits of ESG Integration: Focus on Materiality, a study that suggests investors can benefit from the evaluation of companies’ environmental, social and governance efforts.

ShareAction Launches European Responsible Investment Network
June 9, 2016
An initial group of 25 NGOs, think-tanks, campaign groups, trade unions and faith groups make up the network, designed to coordinate advocacy efforts for responsible investment in Europe.

Ontario, Canada: Plan to Remove Barriers Preventing Women from Attaining Top Leadership Positions
June 7, 2016
Ontario’s commitment follows the release of a report by the Women in Business Steering Committee. The report encourages Canadian issuers to set a target by next year to have 30% women on their boards and to achieve it within three to five years.

Luxembourg Stock Exchange Becomes a Climate Bonds Partner
June 7, 2016
In joining Climate Bonds Initiative, the CEO of LuxSE called for more “standardized approaches” to scale the green bonds market.  The exchange listed the first-ever green bond in 2007 and has hosted over 100 green bonds.

Nairobi Securities Exchange (NSE) Joins UN Global Compact
May 30, 2016
“The Exchange commits to cultivate a culture of governance and transparency amongst our listed companies while safeguarding the interests of our investors”, said NSE Chief Executive Geoffrey Odundo.

BM&FBOVESPA Holds First Environmental, Social, and Corporate Governance Investor Briefing
May 25, 2016
The event, intended for investors and market analysts, provided an overview of sustainability initiatives at the Exchange, and included a presentation on the Exchange’s first Materiality Matrix, a tool to help the Exchange understand the role of sustainability within its business and long-term profitability.

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ESG INDICES AND PRODUCTS

Kenya Plans to Debut Green Bond to Fund Renewable Energy Projects
June 13, 2016
Kenya, East Africa’s biggest economy, is in talks with international investors to prepare the sale of the country’s first green bond, Nairobi Securities Exchange CEO Geoffrey Odundo said.

Nairobi Securities Exchange (NSE) to Launch Its First Sustainability Index
June 11, 2016
The index will measure listed companies’ ESG practices and is fueled by international investor demands for increased transparency by NSE-listed firms.

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MANAGEMENT NEWS

New Appointments to IIRC Governance and Nominations Committee
June 27, 2016
Professor Kunio Ito of Hitotsubashi University in Japan and Maria Helena Santana, former Chair of IOSCO have both been appointed to the International Integrated Reporting Council’s Governance and Nominations Committee in a move to increase the use of Integrated Reporting in Japan and Brazil.

Sustainability Managing Director of BM&FBOVESPA Recognized at UN Global Compact Leaders Summit
June 22, 2016
Sonia Consiglio Favaretto was announced as one of ten 2016 Local Sustainable Development Goals Pioneers for her efforts to align with SDG 8 on Decent Work and Economic Growth at the UNGC Leaders Summit 2016 in New York.

New ESG/Sustainability Lead at S&P Dow Jones Indices
June 6, 2016
Martina MacPherson, former Head of Global ESG Research Marketing at MSCI and current board member of the Network for Sustainable Financial Markets will be responsible for ESG strategy and product management at the S&P Dow Jones Indices business. (pay wall)

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