The International Sustainability Standards Board (ISSB) is mulling the decision over the next few weeks on whether to continue working on certain projects designing sustainability standards for capital markets in advance of its consultation on future priorities, according to chair Emmanuel Faber.

The chair mentioned climate industry-based standards as an example of the upcoming process, saying that the ultimate goal is to make the guidelines internationally valid, also without a consultation.

“That is the kind of decision that we will formally take in the next several weeks to bring clarity to the market about where we want to go,” Faber said yesterday speaking at the BaFin’s conference “Sustainable finance – new EU standards, risk management and supervisory practice” in Berlin.

ISSB has chosen to focus on financed emissions in the standards’ draft, while engaging with the Glasgow Financial Alliance for Net Zero (GFANZ), the alliance of financial institutions, and the Task Force on Climate-Related Financial Disclosures (TCFD) to understand their roadmaps, the chair said.

The ISSB will hold a board meeting next week to discuss the general sustainability-related disclosures (S1), and climate-related disclosures (S2). Financed emissions will also be a topic of discussion, Faber added.

“Next week is going to be very important for us as a board […] We have received high quality feedback from market participants, more than 1,300 letters,” he said.

The ISSB consulted on the draft of climate-related financial disclosures and the requirements for disclosure of sustainability-related financial Information until the end of July.

ISSB’s goal is to create a set of “very consistent, and relevant disclosures for very sophisticated investors and companies”, but also inclusive.

Therefore it started a working group with the UK, US, Japan, EU and China that is meeting regularly – with another meeting next week – to discuss and ultimately align standards in different regions.

Consultations are being held with the US Security and Exchange Commission (SEC) on the question of application of the ISSB standards, on climate in particular, Faber said.

“We also have significant engagement with China that is in the process of organising the governance of sustainability disclosures […] the focus is really on climate,” he added.

The IFRS Foundation, the umbrella organisation for the International Accounting Standards Board (IASB) and ISSB, plans to establish the Sustainability Standards Advisory Forum (SSAF) covering 16 jurisdictions this year.

ISBB is currently also considering establishing an office in Asia in addition to its Tokyo office which has been in operation for 10 years, adding to its offices in Frankfurt and Montreal.

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