The signing of this commitment fosters transparency in the publication of metrics, their convergence among sustainability standard setters and promotes unity around a global solution for the presentation of non-financial reports of companies in matters of sustainability and for contributing to the achievement of the Sustainable Development Goals (SDG).
The initiative launched by the International Business Council of the World Economic Forum derives from the report Measuring Stakeholder Capitalism: Towards Common Metrics and Consistent Reporting of Sustainable Value Creation, which was published in September 2020 as a result of the annual meeting in Davos of the same year. The commitment by the private sector to the publication of these metrics on environmental, social and governance (ESG) factors is proof that these factors are increasingly considered fundamental for the success and the long-term viability of all companies and the sustainable development for the planet.
As Carlos Torres Vila has stated: “Today companies and investors face the dilemma of having to choose between a myriad of different standards to measure, compare and manage sustainability progress. However, the transition to a more sustainable future requires that the different standards converge into an internationally consistent framework. The initiative launched by the World Economic Forum's International Business Council provides a unique opportunity to develop a core set of relevant, consistent and comparable ESG metrics and disclosures. At BBVA we are committed to actively contribute to achieve this fundamental step forward towards a more sustainable future.”
Better ability by investors and companies to assess commitments to sustainability
The indicators defined by the World Economic Forum's International Business Council provide a set of 21 core and 34 expanded metrics, which are focused on people, planet, prosperity and governance that companies can report on regardless of the industry or region to which they belong. These homogeneous and comparable metrics further strengthen the ability of companies and investors to assess progress on sustainability, thus improving decision-making and transparency regarding the shared and sustainable value that companies create.
In regards to the initiative, Klaus Schwab, Founder and Executive Chairman of the World Economic Forum, said: “The public commitments from companies to report not only on financial matters but also their ESG impacts are an important step towards a global economy that works for progress, people and the planet.” For his part, Brian Moynihan, Chairman and CEO of Bank of America and Chairman of the International Business Council, added that the initiative's commitment “will help all stakeholders measure the progress we are making and ensure that the resources capitalism can marshal – from companies, from investors, and others – are directed to where they can make the most difference.”s
This metric project's twin objectives are to accelerate convergence among leading private ESG standard setters and thus facilitate comparability and consistency of ESG disclosure reporting from companies around the world.
In addition, the forum plans to hold a high-level public-private meeting between public standard setters, investors and companies in order to accelerate progress towards a global system of complete corporate reporting that connects non-financial information and financial information.