Eurosif April 2014 Newsletter

04 April 2014

Eurosif April 2014 Newsletter

In this issue:
Save the date: Eurosif's 2014 Annual Event - Global Sustainable Investment Alliance Summit in Utrecht

Eurosif Update

Welcome! Eurosif is happy to welcome two new Member Affiliates: Notenstein Private Bank Ltd and 2° Investing Initiative. Notenstein Private Bank Ltd specialises in wealth management for private and institutional clients. It has twelve branches throughout Switzerland, employs 700 staff and currently manages client assets of CHF 21 billion. Notenstein Private Bank is a 100% subsidiary of Raiffeisen Switzerland. By establishing an in-house research and asset management team, Notenstein is investing strategically in the field of sustainable investing. More information here. The 2° Investing Initiative is a multi-stakeholder think-tank based in Paris and Beijing, which brings together financial institutions, issuers, policy makers, research institutes, experts and NGOs. Its purpose is to promote the integration of climate constraints in financial institutions’ investment strategies and financial regulation. More information here. 2014 GSIA Summit The seven largest sustainable investment membership organisations in the world, including Eurosif, met on March 18-20 in Utrecht at the annual Global Sustainable Investment Alliance (GSIA) summit. Members had the opportunity to compare SRI trends in local financial markets, to further develop GSIA's views and objectives, and to coordinate the publication of the 2014 Global Sustainable Investment Report, which will be released later this year. To learn more about the Alliance, click here. Save the Date! Eurosif's 2014 Annual Event will take place on October 9 in Brussels. Member Affiliates and SIFs are cordially invited to attend. All required details will be provided in due course. On April 9, GLOBE EU, with the support of Eurosif,  will hold a follow up meetingin the European Parliament in Brussels to discuss potential initiatives in order to mobilize private finance in support of a resilient, low-carbon, resource-efficient and inclusive Europe. The invitations have been sent out to Member Affiliates. In case you missed the invite, please contact Eurosif here.

Eurosif Policy On February 26, Eurosif and the Business Benchmark on Farm Animal Welfare jointly hosted a webinar on the emerging EU policy and investment issue of farm animal welfare. The presenters provided an overview of the issue, the related EU policy landscape, and the current state of practice in business,  as well as discussed ways in which investors can take account of farm animal welfare in their investment practices. A recording of the webinar along with the presenations can be found here. On March 26, Eurosif held its second EU Policy Update of this year. Eurosif representatives provided an update on the status of the Non-Financial and Diversity Information Disclosure proposal and discussed the Commission’s Communication on Long-Term Financing of the European Economy. The presenters also gave an overview of the upcoming European Parliament elections and Commission Presidency contest. A recording of the webinar and the accompanying presentation are available here (for Member Affiliates only). The Non-financial and Diversity Information Disclosure Proposal has moved several steps closer toward passage into law. In recent weeks, the Committee of Permanent Representatives (COREPER) and the European Parliament’s Legal Affairs (JURI) Committee (the committee responsible for this dossier) separately endorsed compromise text agreed between the Greek Presidency and the Parliament (see our related Policy Alert). Eurosif wrote a letter to JURI Committee members in mid-March to encourage them to continue to back the compromise text after learning that support for it might be waning. The text must still be formally voted on and approved by the Council and the Parliament in Plenary, which is expected to occur in mid-April. In early March, the European Commission published a Proposal regarding the Responsible Sourcing of Minerals. In the coming months, Eurosif will be working with its policy groups on a response to this proposal. The issue will be taken up by the new Parliament following elections in late May. 

Eurosif Research The survey for the sixth edition of Eurosif’s European SRI Study was finalised in March following a consultation with national SIFs, Member Affiliates and research partners. Eurosif would like to thank all organisations and individuals who participated in the Focus Group. A summary of feedback provided and the survey itself are available in the Member Affiliate only section of our website. 

SIF News FFS Integrating Sustainability in Financing is an informal exchange on the current practices and challenges related to the integration of ESG factors in financing activities (lending and equity), promoted by FFS together with ABI (the Italian Banking Association) and the European Investment Bank. The workshop was held in Milan on April 1. Full program available here. FIR French SIF is a permanent member of the CSR platform launched by former Prime Minister in 2013. A sub-group dedicated to SRI was created within the platform late March. The FIR promotes in particular the creation of a unique and enriched SRI label. For more information, contact FIR. FNG FNG is looking forward to presenting the latest figures of the sustainable investment market in Germany, Austria and Switzerland. The FNG Sustainable Investment Market Report 2014 will be published and presented in Berlin on May 7. Learn more here. UKSIF On April 17, UKSIF will hold its first all-member, all-day conference, the Edinburgh Conference, in Scotland. Eurosif, together with its partners the UK Environment Agency and Trucost, will present CLEAR Info, a project that aims to improve reporting on the environmental performance of companies. CLEAR Info is a co-funded project that is part of the EU LIFE+ programme, the European Union tool financing environment-related projects. For more information on this and other UKSIF Edinburgh Conference sessions please click here

Member Affiliate News CSSP launched Portfolio Carbon Screener, an innovative, easy to use online-based screener that enables institutional and retail investors to understand their investments’ climate impact. Thus, expand and strengthen your strategy on climate risk and impact while minimizing your climate change related risks with the “Portfolio Carbon Screener” here. The flagship sustainability summit CSR Dubai 2014 (18-21 May) will be opened by elected chairman Drs Daan Elffers, CEO of the Anglo-Dutch sustainability consultancy EMG. The conference has played a prominent role in shaping regional Sustainable Development and CSR for more than a decade. More information here. Etica Sgr’s 2013 Balance Sheet shows impressive results: assets under management rose to €783 mln (+55%), number of clients reached 38.500 units (+56%) and gross profit accounted for almost €1.2 mln.These numbers confirm company’s leading role in Italian SRI market and strong customers’ appreciation. For more details click here. Water management is a key sustainability driver in the textile sector. In order to manage a constructive dialogue on the importance of water management and the added value of an effective water management strategy, RobecoSAM identified six areas of success both in direct operations and also in the supply chain. RobecoSAM commenced dialogue with 12 textile companies in its portfolio in early-2010. More information here. Successful launch for Unibail-Rodamco’s sustainable bond supported by Vigeo's methodology. With an amount of €750 million, this environmental and social-based issue was between 3.4 times oversubscribed amongst institutional investors with a subscription of more than €2.5 billion in less than 2 hours. More information here

Member Affiliate Research QUICK, the Japanese financial information provider, is to launch an information service incorporating EIRIS’ analysis. EIRIS will provide ESG research on 2,000+ companies. Different data levels will include ratings; ratings with underlying assessments; or the full range of tools, data and news alerts in the online EIRIS Global Platform. More information here. FEE has published a discussion paper on the Future of Audit and Assurance. The paper lays out initial observations which could result in potential longer-term developments in audit, assurance and other services. You can find the paper on the FEE websiteComments and responses to the questions in the paper should be sent by email to FEE by 30 June 2014Comments may also be submitted via an online survey.
Oekom research published its sixth annual report on global corporate responsibility. The latest facts and figures on companies’ engagement towards sustainable development illustrate that companies are only partially fulfilling their responsibilities in this area. Download the “oekom Corporate Responsibility Review 2014” here. The Sustainable Business Institute (SBI), publisher of the market platform, has analysed the performance of app. 383 European retail funds using ESG criteria. Further information is available on the platform. New Sustainalytics Report: Yearly ESG Overview & Outlook of the Xi-Li Administration in China provides insight into the country’s shifting political landscape, focussing on six key sustainability issues. The report also highlights those industries and companies best-positioned to take advantage of changing policies and those most at risk. Read the full report here

Events Global Supply Chains Summit - The Guardian Friday 11 April 2014, 9:30a.m.- 5:00p.m. GMT, London. More information here. Investment Strategies for Reducing Fossil Fuel Exposure –  MSCI Webinar Tuesday 22 April 2014, 1:00-2:00p.m. GMT. More information here. Inrate Sustainability Breakfast about Exclusion Screens Tuesday 20 May 2014, Geneva / Thursday 22 May 2014, Zurich. More information and registration here

SRI Jobs For details of current SRI jobs, please see the jobs section of the Eurosif website here. To keep up to date with Eurosif activities, please follow us on Twitter!@Eurosif