WASHINGTON, Oct. 15, 2012 /PRNewswire/ — The Emerging Markets Disclosure Project (EMDP) released its final report today, Lessons Learned: The Emerging Markets Disclosure Project, 2008 – 2012, documenting a five year initiative championing greater transparency among emerging market companies on key environmental, social and governance (ESG) issues.
In 2008 members of the International Working Group (IWG) of US SIF: The Forum for Sustainable and Responsible Investment (http://www.ussif.org), created the EMDP with leadership from Boston Common Asset Management, LLC (http://www.bostoncommonasset.com) and Calvert Investments (http://www.calvert.com). The United Nations (UN)-backed Principles for Responsible Investment (PRI) Secretariat provided technical assistance and local coordinative support to the EMDP.
The project’s accomplishments included:
Established a model for collaboration to improve sustainability reporting and practices in emerging markets, which will be used by signatories to the PRI in the years ahead.
Won the backing of 55 investors with more than $1 trillion in assets under management.
Published four original research reports, documenting wide disparities in sustainability disclosure practices, greatly varied knowledge of ESG risks, and a lack of understanding among companies of how investors use sustainability data.
Created a scorecard to benchmark company ESG performance
Formed four country teams with local and international partners in Brazil, Indonesia, South Africa and South Korea, which engaged 72 companies on sustainability issues.
Achieved its core goal—increased and improved corporate sustainability reporting in emerging markets.
EMDP Country Team highlights:
The Brazil country team contacted 102 companies and engaged 17 directly to encourage them to improve their sustainability reporting. All 17 either had plans to issue sustainability reports or were open to working towards this goal.
The team in Indonesia convinced a listed polyester and petrochemicals company, Indorama Synthetics, to learn more about ESG best practices and helped the firm identify and focus on several key sustainability issues
The South Africa team won reforms from Aspen Pharmacare Holdings¸ Naspers, Sasol, Shoprite Holdings, Steinhoff International and Tiger Brands, including improvements in sustainability reporting and policies.
In South Korea, the local EMDP team made steady progress on reporting with all 15 companies it engaged, including Hynix, LG Electronics, Samsung and Shinhan Financial Group.
The full press release and report can be found at: http://ussif.org/projects/iwg/documents/EMDP2012.pdf
SOURCE Boston Common Asset Management, LLC