Global Reporting Initiative (GRI) has provided technical input to guides produced by the Dhaka Stock Exchange (DSE) and the Colombo Stock Exchange (CSE), which they will share with all their listed companies, providing recommendations on best practice for sustainability reporting.
More than 500 businesses in Sri Lanka and Bangladesh are being supported to report on their sustainability impacts following the launch of the guidance.
The two publications were launched at an event—‘Sustainability Reporting for Sustainable Development’—hosted by GRI chief executive Tim Mohin. The session was attended by senior representatives from listed companies from the region, stock exchanges, professional organisations and international bodies.
Mohin said: “More and more companies are starting to realise that sustainability reporting is not only a business opportunity, it’s a business necessity. Reporting on their impacts promotes transparency, which in turn helps them anticipate risks and informs decision making.
“These new guides for Sri Lanka and Bangladesh, will have an important role in supporting them to unlock the many social, environmental and economic benefits of greater transparency.
“Sustainability reporting has a crucial role in supporting sustainable development, helping companies understand and communicate their impacts on critical issues for the communities where they operate, such as climate change, human rights and labour relations.”
CSE CEO Rajeeva Bandaranaike said: “We are encouraged by the growing commitment of Sri Lankan entities towards communicating their sustainability performance. We encourage Sri Lankan listed companies to take considerable strides towards making sustainability reporting an effective and standard practice.
“The second version of our guidance document to listed companies on communicating sustainability integrates perspectives and standards of GRI, which is set to add considerable value to users of the publication.”
BSE managing director Majedur Rahman said: “It is unquestionable that many environmental, social and governance factors impact on the ability of companies and their investors to achieve sustainable growth and prosperity.
“From a regulatory point of view, DSE will play a vital role in monitoring the sustainability reports through which listed companies’ economic, environmental and social impacts and decisions will be reflected. We look forward to continuing improvements in sustainability disclosure in corporate reporting in Bangladesh.”
By Asena Degirmenci