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GRI and IFRS Work Together to Promote Interoperability

The Global Reporting Initiative (GRI) and the IFRS Foundation announced an expanded partnership designed to maximize the potential of each organization’s sustainable reporting standards when utilized in tandem.

The announcement expands upon a 2022 initial collaboration agreement between the organizations, which aimed to ensure the interoperability and compatibility of sustainability-related disclosures in order to help harmonize sustainability reporting systems internationally and lessen the reporting burden on companies complying with the various standards that were in place or under development.

The International Sustainability Standards Board (ISSB) of the IFRS Foundation was established at the COP26 climate summit in November 2021 with the objective of creating IFRS Sustainability Disclosure Standards to inform investors about the opportunities and dangers associated with a company’s sustainability. The first-ever general sustainability (IFRS S1) and climate (IFRS S2) reporting standards were published by the IFRS in June 2023. In July, regulators were urged to integrate the standards into their sustainability reporting regulatory frameworks by IOSCO, the premier global policy forum and standards-setter for securities regulators.

For the purpose of guiding its work on future sustainability reporting standard setting, the ISSB recently announced plans to start new projects investigating corporate disclosure on risks and opportunities in important sustainability-related areas like biodiversity, ecosystems and ecosystem services, and human capital.

As stated by the IFRS Foundation and the GRI, the increased cooperation aims to “offer businesses seeking to satisfy the information requirements of investors and a wider spectrum of stakeholders with a seamless, worldwide, and all-inclusive sustainability reporting system.”

A pilot methodology based on the GRI’s new biodiversity standard and the ISSB’s recently announced project on biodiversity, ecosystems, and ecosystem services will be implemented, according to the organizations. The agreement also states that the ISSB and GSSB will collaborate to identify and align common disclosures.