As of January 1, 2024, the corporate world steps into a transformative era in sustainability reporting.
The European Commission's landmark approval of the European Sustainability Reporting Standards (ESRS)* heralds not just a policy shift, but a stride towards a more sustainable, transparent corporate future.
💡 ESRS at a Glance:
Mandatory Standards: ESRS mandates critical disclosures for companies under the CSRD, enhancing accountability and transparency.
Dual Structure: Segregated into Cross-cutting and Thematic categories, these standards encompass a broad spectrum of sustainability facets.
Assessment and Relevance: They necessitate a comprehensive evaluation of each company's specific impacts, risks, and opportunities in sustainability.
📊 Integration with CSRD and Purpose of ESRS:
Annual Sustainability Declaration: Under CSRD, companies now include a sustainability statement in annual reports, aligned with ESRS guidelines.
Harmonization and Reliability: The primary objective is to standardize information preparation and disclosure, ensuring reliability and comparability.
📝 Structure of ESRS:
First Set of Standards: ESRS serves as the primary reference for sustainability information disclosure in annual management reports.
Tailored Standards for Various Businesses: The European Commission will introduce additional standards, addressing diverse business types and sizes.
⏰ Timeline for ESRS Adoption:
Immediate Adoption for Some: Large public-interest entities with over 500 employees (previously under NFRD) must comply in 2024, with the first sustainability statement due in 2025.
- Large EU companies not under NFRD: Compliance from 2025.
- Listed SMEs and other specified entities: Compliance from 2026.
- Non-EU companies: Compliance from 2028.
Special Provisions: Listed SMEs and third-country companies under CSRD will have bespoke, proportional ESRS sets.
🔍 Impact of the Regulations:
Enhanced Transparency and Performance Evaluation: The CSRD and ESRS facilitate improved structuring of sustainability performance information, enabling more effective and transparent comparisons.
Challenges and Opportunities: These regulations present both challenges and opportunities, particularly for companies previously not under NFRD.
🚀 2024 Expectations:
Preparation and Compliance: With many large firms already adapting to these new standards, 2024 is a pivotal year for businesses to prepare for compliance.
FiO Legal is strategically positioned to assist companies in navigating these changes, ensuring not only compliance but also seizing competitive advantage. Our team offers tailored guidance, leveraging our expertise in legal innovation to transform the challenges of ESRS into opportunities for sustainable growth and leadership.