The Platform on Sustainable Finance has published a new report on the Technical Selection Criteria (TSC) for the four remaining environmental objectives:
- Sustainable use and protection of water and marine resources.
- Transition to a circular economy
- Pollution prevention and control
- Protection and restoration of biodiversity and ecosystems
While these criteria do not bind the European Commission (EC) to any decision, it is nevertheless required (Articles 12-15 of the Taxonomy Regulation) to adopt a delegated act establishing TSCs for these objectives, which may follow those established by the Platform. The EC has therefore finally adopted, by way of a delegated regulation, the long-anticipated Regulatory Technical Standards (RTS) on information to be disclosed by financial market participants subject to the Sustainable Finance Disclosure Regulation (SFDR).
These standards cover both the content and the methodologies and presentation of the information. They remain largely unchanged from the draft SFDR proposed in February 2021, including the list of negative impact indicators.
What short-term impact on disclosure?
The ball is now in the court of the European Council and the European Parliament. They have 3 months (extendable to 6 months) to consider the delegated regulation, whose entry into force has been postponed to 1 January 2023. In the meantime, financial market participants can refer to the adopted RTS and its five annexes to prepare their periodic disclosures.
Further initiatives to come?
We note two outstanding issues:
- The extension of the Taxonomy to social objectives
- The possibility of reshaping the Taxonomy regulation to focus on the ecological transition of the economy
It all depends on how the Commission will follow up on the Platform's reports. However, it is unlikely that we will see a quick response in the form of new regulatory initiatives.
The ABBL is currently working with its members on the following two related initiatives:
- The update of the practical guide on SFDR, based on the published RTS. This update is being carried out by Stibbe Avocats, in collaboration with the ABBL, the ACA and ALFI.
- A special meeting on the technical aspects of the reporting obligations introduced by the Delegated Act on Article 8 of the Taxonomy Regulation will take place shortly.
If you would like to know more about these initiatives, please contact us at firstname.lastname@example.org or email@example.com.
By Thomas Collin, Sustainability & CSR Officer