Exchange in Focus: Borsa Istanbul co-hosts PRI workshop and ESG integration programme

(3 April, 2019) Borsa İstanbul, a founding Sustainable Stock Exchange (SSE) initiative partner since 2012, in collaboration with the UN-backed Principles for Responsible Investment (PRI), Turkish Institutional Investment Managers’ Association (TKYD) and Emerging Markets for Responsible Investing (EMRI) recently held a workshop for 75 local market participants based on the PRI methodology on ESG integration and best practices in emerging markets.

The Istanbul ESG Programme was the third Emerging Markets-focused event for members of PRI, an investor network representing over $82 trillion in AUM. The event provided an opportunity to raise awareness on the six principles of the PRI, and to deepen understanding and discussion on environmental, social and governance (ESG) integration with a focus on company-investor engagement. The program was co-organized and facilitated by EMRI, a social enterprise engaging local companies and responsible investors in emerging and frontier markets on ESG issues.

Following a welcome by Mr. Mehmet Gönen, Executive Vice-President of Borsa İstanbul, opening keynote remarks were made by the local supporting institutions, the IIRC Turkey (ERTA) and TUYID (Turkish Investor Relations Society). The workshop included presentations by the PRI and Aberdeen Standard Investments, a PRI Member.

Sir Mark-Moody Stuart of the United Nations Global Compact and ESG Advisory Committee at the FTSE Russell, presented key ESG emerging markets data from the FTSE4GOOD indices. Moody-Stuart noted that advanced emerging markets are catching up quickly to developed markets regarding fast-growing ESG investments. He cited data showing that Turkey has improved its ESG performance and is currently competing in the ranks with Thailand and Chile. He said that although significant advancements have been made by local market participants (sample pool size is 23 Turkish companies), Turkey continues to lag in the following areas: health and safety, consumer regulation and environmental supply chain sustainability. This is a common trend in other emerging markets around the world.

The important gathering concluded with an executive panel discussion with knowledge and experience sharing from industrial conglomerate Sabanci Holding, TEB Asset Management (BNP Parisbas JV) and TKYD which generously supported the event.

Several key knowledge tools were translated to the local language and unveiled for the first time, including the PRI Guide and ESG Reporting Discussion Paper, a joint publication of the PRI and the International Corporate Governance Network (ICGN).

All co-organizing partners and local supporting institutions agreed to continue working together to advance ESG integration and are considering convening a larger international audience in Istanbul in 2020.

For more information, please visit Borsa İstanbul’s website –

Find the full program of the event here.


Principle for Responsible Investment (PRI):
Ms. Yulia Sofronova, Head, Nordic, CEE and CIS

Borsa İstanbul:
Dr. Recep Bildik, Director, Private Market
Mr. Yavuz Selim Kurt, Director, Corporate Communications

Emerging Markets for Responsible Investing (EMRI):
Ms. Deniz Ozturk Brown, Co-founder & Managing Member
Mr. Ahmet Cenk Goksan, Co-founder & Member

TKYD (Turkish Institutional Investment Managers’ Association):
Mr. Selim Yazici, Chairperson
Mr. Cuneyt Demirkaya, Secretary-General

About the SSE

The Sustainable Stock Exchanges (SSE) initiative, launched in 2009 by the UN Secretary General, is a UN Partnership Programme of the UN Conference on Trade and Development (UNCTAD), the UN Global Compact, the UN Environment Program Finance Initiative (UNEP FI), and the Principles for Responsible Investment (PRI). The SSE convenes stock exchanges who join by signing a voluntary public commitment and it currently has 78 Partner Exchanges worldwide. It provides Model Guidance on ESG disclosure for stock exchanges to help with the preparation of ESG reporting guidelines. The SSE has three inter-related pillars of activity: research, consensus building and technical assistance.

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