Update on Consultation on Enhancement of Climate Disclosures Under ESG Framework

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In April 2023, the Stock Exchange of Hong Kong Limited (the Exchange), a wholly-owned subsidiary of Hong Kong Exchanges and Clearing Limited published a consultation paper (Consultation Paper) seeking market feedback on proposals to enhance climate-related disclosures under its environmental, social and governance (ESG) framework, with a proposed implementation date of 1 January 2024.

The proposals were informed by the IFRS S2 Climate-related Disclosures (ISSB Climate Standard) exposure draft published by the International Sustainability Standards Board (ISSB) and their subsequent deliberations. The Exchange stated that it would take into account the final ISSB Climate Standard when finalising the Listing Rule amendments.

In June 2023, the ISSB published the final IFRS Sustainability Disclosure Standards1. The ISSB has further indicated that an adoption guide (ISSB Adoption Guide) will be published to support jurisdictional regulators to help them in their implementation considerations and to advise on scalability and phasing-in measures for the application of the ISSB standards2. The ISSB Adoption Guide is expected to be available before the end of 2023.

The Exchange intends to take into account the recommended approaches on the scaling and phasing-in of requirements available under the ISSB Adoption Guide when finalising the Listing Rule amendments. The implementation date of the Listing Rule amendments will therefore be postponed to 1 January 2025 to allow issuers more time to familiarise themselves with the new climate-related disclosure requirements.

The HKSAR Government will work with relevant financial regulators and stakeholders to develop a roadmap on the appropriate adoption of the ISSB standards for Hong Kong’s financial services to align with international standards3. As a member of the Hong Kong Green and Sustainable Finance Cross-Agency Steering Group4 (CASG), HKEX will continue to work closely with the Government and other members of the CASG on the development of the roadmap.

Notes:

  1. Comprising the IFRS S1 General Requirements for Disclosure of Sustainability-related Financial Information and the ISSB Climate Standard.
  2. See Cover note: Adoption Guide overview published by the IFRS Foundation.
  3. See “Policy Measures” of the Chief Executive’s 2023 Policy Address. See also the Press Release of the CASG dated 7 August 2023.
  4. Established in May 2020, the CASG is co-chaired by the Hong Kong Monetary Authority and the Securities and Futures Commission. Members include the Environment and Ecology Bureau, Financial Services and the Treasury Bureau, Hong Kong Exchanges and Clearing Limited, Insurance Authority and the Mandatory Provident Fund Schemes Authority.

Source: Hong Kong Exchanges and Clearing Limited

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