JSE announces ESG partnership with FTSE Russell
Johannesburg, 3 June 2015, The Johannesburg Stock Exchange, Africa's leading exchange and the first emerging market and first stock exchange to form a Socially Responsible Investment Index (SRI Index) in 2004, today announced that from 2015 it is partnering with FTSE Russell, the global index provider, in progressing the JSE's work around promoting corporate sustainability practices over the last decade.
The new partnership will see the JSE aligning its environmental, social and governance (ESG) disclosure indicators and data collection methodology with FTSE Russell's evolved ESG approach. This will enable JSE-listed companies to form part of a global universe of corporates whose disclosure practices are assessed against cutting edge ESG factors and will provide investors with expanded opportunities to integrate ESG considerations into their investments. The new approach will replace the SRI Index.
"This transition represents the next generation in our evolutionary work to promote ESG disclosure, building on the achievements of the SRI Index and the great strides that South African corporates have made in this regard, and will enable us to respond to the growing need amongst investors seeking to integrate sustainability considerations into their investments," says Corli Le Roux, Head, SRI Index and Sustainability at the JSE.
Both the JSE and FTSE Russell have a long track record of innovation in the ESG and sustainability sector, and have a long-standing relationship through the calculation of the FTSE/JSE Africa Index Series. "Collaborating with FTSE Russell on expanding our efforts in sustainability offers a number of synergies and benefits for both organisations and our clients, and was thus a logical opportunity for us to pursue," says Le Roux.
David Harris, Head of ESG for FTSE Russell said: "In recent years, we have continued to see growing levels of interest in responsible investment and ESG factors from institutional and retail investors throughout the world. We are delighted to be working closely with the JSE as part of our response to meet this increased demand, and supporting a market that has been a frontrunner in promoting high quality ESG disclosure and practice. ESG factors are increasingly being recognised as critical to both risk and return considerations for mainstream investments."
"The dynamic nature of sustainability requires a constant re-evaluation of approaches to support an enabling environment in which listed companies can respond to the growing pressure to report and where investors can integrate issues that are material to their portfolios. The JSE is committed to remaining a thought leader in this regard and to continue to find opportunities in responsible investment," concludes Le Roux.
The Johannesburg Stock Exchange is based in South Africa where it has operated as a market place for the trading of financial products for 125 years. It connects buyers and sellers in equity, derivative and debt markets. The JSE is one of the top 20 exchanges in the world in terms of market capitalisation and is a member of the World Federation of Exchanges (WFE). The JSE offers a fully electronic, efficient, secure market with world class regulation, trading and clearing systems, settlement assurance and risk management. www.jse.co.za
H+K Strategies South Africa
Tel: +27 11 463 2198
Corli Le Roux
Head of SRI Index and Sustainability
(011) 520 7000