Going Beyond the Balance Sheet: Disclosure and Transparency Webinar

18 Jun, 2020
Online

For more information, please contact the SSE team.

Disclosure and transparency are critical for attracting capital and building resilient enterprises in emerging markets. Transparent corporate reporting, integrating financial and Environmental, Social and Governance (ESG) information, increases trust and confidence for investors, as it provides critical insights into how companies manage their operations and make decisions relevant to pursuing opportunities and managing risks. Corporate reporting may also shed light on how companies create different types of long-term value, including contributions to addressing societal crises, such as the current pandemic.

This webinar aims to help emerging market companies understand how to report better to investors and other key stakeholders, building on IFC’s award-winning Disclosure and Transparency Toolkit “Beyond the Balance Sheet.”

Objectives of the webinar:

(i) Demonstrate the strategic value and demand for corporate reporting and disclosure practices.

(ii) Provide practical guidance, tools and resources for integrating financial and ESG reporting practices in emerging markets; and

(iii) Further develop and support regional capacity building resources, networks, and partnerships.

 

NOTE: This event already took place. The news release on this event can be found here.

 

Webinar Summary

IFC and UN SSE Host Transparency Seminar in EAP to Boost Corporate Resilience, Attract Capital

IFC, a member of the World Bank Group, attracted 400 representatives of central banks, stock exchanges, universities and companies from 42 countries in East Asia and Pacific (EAP) for the first EAP environmental, social and governance (ESG) advisory webinar “Going Beyond the Balance Sheet” on the importance of ESG disclosure and transparency.

The seminar was organized in partnership with the United Nations Sustainable Stock Exchanges Initiative (UN SSE), a network of 96 stock exchanges and regulators.

Opening remarks by Vivek Pathak, IFC’s Regional Director for East Asia and the Pacific, introduced the award-winning “Beyond the Balance Sheet” toolkit as a source of practical guidance for improved disclosure and transparency (D&T) practices and the importance of the collaboration with UN SSE. “I greatly look forward to many more East Asia Pacific countries adopting these tools to help their companies become more attractive to investors,” he said. Referring to the COVID-19 pandemic, he stated, “It is absolutely critical” for companies to communicate with investors and stakeholders about how they are managing the crisis. Transparency of the highest standard will differentiate how companies come out of this pandemic.”

Presentations from IFC panelists, Robeco Group and the Indonesia Investment Fund addressed questions about the business case for disclosure and transparency and how companies build resilient enterprises in the new environment.

Challenges for investors include gaining access to high quality, comparable information. ESG transparency is often the starting point for change, leading to better risk informed investment decisions and better risk-adjusted returns. Companies are advised to increase forward-looking strategy information in their reporting (25% or more), linking strategic ESG objectives to governance and performance information. Investors are looking for value creation, and they want to be able to trust the company, its leadership and its activities. The performance report allows companies to tell their story beyond the balance sheet. IFC works holistically with companies, investors and regulators, and in partnership with the UNSSE, to demystify and streamline ESG reporting practices. IFC’s step-by-step guidance for integrating ESG into strategy, governance and performance helps companies to progress from basic reporting practices to international standards.

Next steps include using AI technologies to make these tools and progressive approaches available on a dynamic Disclosure and Transparency platform to help companies develop comprehensive integrated reports that incorporate the ESG and financial information, to reach as many as possible. The EAP ESG team is looking forward to rolling out the local translations of the toolkit (much interest from the chat), launching the D&T Platform and working with clients (both stock exchanges and companies) in collaboration with UN SSE.

 

 

Registration

Jointly hosted by SSE and IFC
Asia Pacific ESG Advisory Webinar Series #1
Thu, June 18, 2020
12:30 Hong Kong Time (HKT)

Speakers

  • Vivek Pathak
    Regional Director for East Asia and Pacific
    International Finance Corporation
  • Ralitza Germanova
    Corporate Governance Officer
    International Finance Corporation
  • Erik P.M. Vermeulen
    Director of the International Business Law program
    Tilburg University
  • Monika Kumar
    Sustainability Coordinator
    World Bank
  • Susan Blesener
    CEO
    The Art of Value
  • Anne E. Molyneux
    Member of IIRC
    International Integrated Reporting Council
  • Jerome Lavigne-Deville
    Senior Consultant
    International Finance Corporation
  • Charles Travis Canfield (Chuck)
    Principal Corporate Governance Officer
    International Finance Corporation
  • Justin Pooley
    ESG Manager for Asia Pacific
    International Finance Corporation
  • Carola van Lamoen
    Head Sustainable Investing Center of Expertise
    Robeco

Programme

18 Jun, 2020

  • 12:30 – 12:40

    Welcoming Remarks

    Speaker: Vivek Pathak, Regional Director for East Asia and Pacific, IFC

  • 12:40 – 13:20

    The Business Case for Transparency
    Why is ESG transparency important when everyone is focused on financial
    sustainability? This session provides an overview of the strategic value and
    demand for comprehensive, integrated reporting.

    Speakers:

    Ralitza Germanova, Corporate Governance Officer, IFC
    Erik P.M. Vermeulen, Professor of Business and Financial Law and Director of the International Business Law program, Tilburg University, the Netherlands and Senior Legal Counsel on Corporate Governance (CG) at Signify
    Carola van Lamoen, Robeco Head of Sustainable Investing Center of Excellence, Executive Director

  • 13:20 – 14:20

    How Companies Attract Capital and Build Resilient Enterprises

    Moderator: Monika Kumar, Environmental Specialist, World Bank Corporate
    Responsibility

     

    Strategy: Where to start your corporate reporting journey and how
    transparency leads to progress, including improved internal processes and
    practices.

    Speaker: Susan Blesener, CEO, The Art of Value

     

    Corporate Governance: What are the major components and nuances of
    reporting on corporate governance to diverse users?

    Speaker: Anne Molyneux, Vice Chair, International CG Network, member of
    International Integrated Reporting Council (IIRC) and Director, CS
    International

     

    Performance: How to report material ESG information together with
    financial results?

    Speaker: Jerome Lavigne-Deville, Senior Consultant, IFC

     

    Company Leadership on Crisis Response: How to report on effective
    response practices?

    Speaker: Charles “Chuck” Travis Canfield, Principal Corporate Governance
    Officer

  • 14:20 – 14:30

    Closing Remarks

    Speaker: Justin Pooley, ESG Manager for Asia Pacific, IFC

About the SSE

​The SSE initiative is a UN Partnership Programme organised by UNCTAD, the UN Global Compact, UNEP FI and the PRI. The SSE’s mission is to provide a global platform for exploring how exchanges, in collaboration with investors, companies (issuers), regulators, policymakers and relevant international organizations, can enhance performance on ESG (environmental, social and corporate governance) issues and encourage sustainable investment, including the financing of the UN Sustainable Development Goals. The SSE seeks to achieve this mission through an integrated programme of conducting evidence-based policy analysis, facilitating a network and forum for multi-stakeholder consensus-building, and providing technical assistance and advisory services.