Erik Thedéen, Chair of the International Organization of Securities Commissions (IOSCO) Sustainability Task Force issued an open letter to five of the leading framework- and standard-setting institutions, endorsing efforts by the organizations and the IFRS Foundation to align sustainability reporting globally.

IOSCO is the leading international policy forum for securities regulators and is recognised as the global standard setter for securities regulation.  The organization’s membership regulates more than 95% of the world’s securities markets.

The letter comes in response to one sent by the organizations – CDP, the Climate Disclosure Standards Board (CDSB), the Global Reporting Initiative (GRI), the International Integrated Reporting Council (IIRC) and the Sustainability Accounting Standards Board (SASB) – in September, following a joint statement by the standard setters. In the statement, the group presented a shared vision of the elements necessary for comprehensive corporate reporting, explaining how their respective frameworks and standards complement Financial GAAP and provide the natural starting point for progress towards a globally coherent solution.

In the letter, Thedéen welcomes the organization’s invitation to IOSCO to engage in initiatives to develop a comprehensive corporate reporting system including sustainability information, in a manner integrated with financial reporting, and expresses IOSCO’s desire to see the organizations’ and IFRS Foundation’s efforts come together.

Thedéen writes:

“We look forward to continuing and deepening our collaboration with your organizations and the IFRS Foundation. An important aim will be to help ensure that these initiatives proceed towards convergence in a coordinated way that meets the needs of capital markets and serves the public interest.”

Following the response, CDSB Chair Richard Samans said:

“We welcome IOSCO’s positive response to our open letter. IOSCO’s commitment to engage with us is a reflection of the widespread, mainstream demand around the world for a more coherent sustainability reporting system that meets the needs of capital markets. The letter draws an appropriate parallel to IOSCO’s important role two decades ago in the establishment of the IFRS Foundation, which has made great strides in standardizing financial reporting globally through an independent, market-based technical process ultimately accountable to public authorities.”