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ESMA responds to EC consultation on update of reporting guidelines to reflect climate-related disclosures

26 March 2019

The European Securities and Markets Authority (ESMA) welcomes the European Commission’s proposal to update the non-binding Guidelines on non-financial reporting with the introduction of a specific supplement addressing climate-related disclosures. ESMA takes the opportunity to make some recommendations on how the Guidelines can be further developed to promote higher quality disclosures.

ESMA, building on the enforcement experience of non-financial statements, highlights some areas for improvement relating to the Non-Financial Reporting Directive (NFRD). In its view without an increase in the specificity of the requirements in the NFRD, any amendment to the Guidelines, even if helpful, is unlikely to result in a significant shift towards more consistent and enforceable non-financial reporting.

Next steps

ESMA and European enforcers will continue to focus on the application of the NFRD and the related Guidelines when assessing the non-financial reporting by issuers in 2019.  Further details about ESMA’s enforcement activities will be published in the 2018 Report on enforcement and regulatory activity of European accounting enforcers.