New ISO Technical Committee on Sustainable Finance

Contact(s)

Peter Hall

Adviser
hall@ioe-emp.com
+41 (0) 22 929 00 21

News on the recent vote in favour of and establishment of a new ISO Technical Committee on Sustainable Finance

Dear Members and Partners,

Over the summer, ISO members voted in favour of a proposal to create a new Technical Committee on Sustainable Development (now known as TC 322). The result was made public in October.

We are not able to know the breakdown of the vote. However, as a rule of thumb it can be assumed that those national ISO bodies that apply to be a Participating Member of a Technical Committee usually voted in favour of the proposal (with exceptions).

Important information:

  • The scope of this Technical Committee: “Standardization in the field of sustainable finance for the integration of sustainability considerations and environmental, social and governance (ESG) practices into institutional investment decision making and wider finance management. It will ultimately look to support the alignment of the global financial system with the sustainable development goals.”
  • So far, there are 15 “Participating Members” and 13 “Observing Members”. Participating members can send experts to working meetings etc., whereas Observing members cannot (they can only receive documents etc.).
  • The position of Chairperson for this Technical Committee is still open. Also, currently ISO’s UK member – BSI – is the Secretariat for this committee, although that role needs formal approval.
  • The first meeting of the Technical Committee is not yet confirmed. The information will be posted on the following webpage.

Immediate focus of the new Technical Committee:

  • As a priority, a Framework for Sustainable Finance Management Guide will be developed to consolidate concepts relating to sustainable finance, agree common terminology (e.g. definitions and taxonomy), and provide practical guidance on principles and practices that constitute sustainable finance (management). It will provide examples of good practice, as well as implementation guidance on the different approaches financial organisations can take to improve and demonstrate their activities and organisational models are in line with Environmental, Social and Governance (ESG) criteria and the Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs). The standard will bring related concepts and activities (e.g. responsible investment management, stewardship, green and environmental finance) under the wider, more holistic umbrella of sustainable finance, thus linking global financial activities with the SDG agenda. Importantly, it will draw upon existing and ongoing standardization effort (such as environmental management, governance, social responsibility, financial services, climate finance work), and will serve as the basis of future international sustainable finance standardization at the process (i.e. fund manager) and product (e.g. fund) level.
  • The wider programme will also address:
  1. Integration of sustainability considerations and ESG principles into financial decision-making and broader financial services and products (i.e. responsible investment aspect, stewardship aspects, and (social) impact investment aspects).
  2. Green finance.
  3. Sustainable investment at the sector level / sustainable finance applications.

For more information visit this webpage.

Yours sincerely,

Peter Hall
Adviser