Securities regulators support basing International Sustainability Standards Board in Canada

Canada fosters collaborative leadership on environmental issues: Canadian Securities Administrators

Securities regulators support basing International Sustainability Standards Board in Canada

The Canadian Securities Administrators (CSA) expressed its strong support for the establishment of the International Sustainability Standards Board in Canada and for Canada’s offer to host the board’s global headquarters in Canada.

“Establishing international standards is an important step in enhancing industry reporting and disclosure that yields reliable, complete, and comparable information for investors,” said Louis Morisset, chairperson of the CSA and president and chief executive officer of the Autorité des marchés financiers, in a news release from the CSA.

According to the news release, Canada represents the following expected benefits as the potential host for the board’s headquarters:

  • The country has one of the most diversified economies across the globe, with industries providing experience, history and leadership in relation to standard-setting, governance, sustainability reporting and climate-related financial disclosures.
  • It has issuers and large asset managers that have committed to developing comparable environmental, social and governance standards and to domestically and globally reducing carbon emissions.
  • It has promoted consensus, collaborative leadership and innovation regarding environmental issues, including through the Canada-United Kingdom Partnership on Clean Growth and Climate Change, which was announced in 2017, the High-Level Dialogue on Climate Change in 2010 and the Canada-EU High-Level Dialogue on Environment in 1983.

“As a global ambassador that prioritizes strong governance, stewardship and leadership, the CSA is supportive of advancing the ISSB, and believes Canada is uniquely positioned to be its home,” Morisset added.

The federal government formally submitted its offer letter to the International Financial Reporting Standards Foundation, with the bid involving a national collaborative effort called the Canadian Champions for Global Sustainability Standards, which includes securities regulators, financial institutions, pension funds, accounting firms, insurance companies, large Canadian organizations and a First Nations organization, said a news release from the Chartered Professional Accountants of Canada (CPA Canada).

The securities regulators among the Canadian Champions for Global Sustainability Standards include the British Columbia Securities Commission and the Ontario Securities Commission as financial contributors and the Canadian Securities Administrators as a supporter.

The International Sustainability Standards Board will potentially develop global standards for reporting on environmental, social and governance matters. A consistent approach is important, given that there are presently numerous reporting frameworks and sustainability-related standards, said CPA Canada’s news release.

“The overwhelming support associated with the Canadian offer clearly demonstrates the breadth and depth of this collaborative effort,” said Amanda Whitewood, chairperson of the board of directors of CPA Canada, in the news release.

“Our country has a solid track record of working with global institutions on sustainability and standard setting, including the IFRS Foundation,” added Charles-Antoine St-Jean, president and chief executive officer of CPA Canada.

The decision regarding the new board is expected to be officially announced at the United Nations Climate Change Conference (COP26) in November.

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