NSE releases 2019 Sustainability Report, encourages business, inclusive growth

From Cyriacus Nnaji Lagos

Nigerian Stock Exchange (NSE) has announced the release of its 2019 Sustainability Report themed “Encouraging Sustainable Businesses, Promoting Inclusive Growth”.

According to a press statement, the report is a detailed compilation of the progress and milestones achieved by the NSE during the reporting period in line with its sustainability commitments, which were developed following the launch of its Corporate Sustainability and Responsibility (CSR) strategy in 2013.

The report, the statement said, also provided an update on activities implemented by the NSE, which contributed towards efforts to achieve the Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) across its ecosystem.

Highlights of the Report indicated that the Green bond listing increased by over N30billion; Executed first cross border green listing of Access Bank’s N15Bn Green Bond subsequent to an MoU signed with Luxembourg Stock Exchange (LuxSE); Collected 1,809kg of recyclables from the NSE Head Office towards promotion of circular economy and Achieved 342% increase in the number of students impacted through the 2019 Global Money Week with 66,749 students engaged in 2019 compared to 15,116 in 2018

Other highlights include Received 40,966 applications for the annual NSE Essay Competition, up by over 100% from 2018; Hosted the inaugural Ring the Bell for Financial Literacy in collaboration with IOSCO and WF; Sign up to Employee Volunteering Programme (EVP) increased by 265% and Awarded Best Corporate Social Responsibility Initiative (Promoting Sustainability & Reporting) at the 9th Marketing World Awards in Accra, Ghana and Rotary Outstanding Invaluable Company Award for CSR from Rotary International District 9110, Nigeria.

Commenting on the report, the Head, Corporate Communications, Olumide Orojimi, NSE, said, “At The Exchange, we continue to hold ourselves accountable to the highest standards, constantly exploring new ways to apply sustainability practices in our business operations and promote the integration of Environmental, Social and Governance imperatives in the Nigerian capital market. This year’s report, therefore, spotlights the remarkable progress we made in implementing our strategic objectives with corresponding measurable impact on all stakeholder groups.

“Recognising the critical role the capital market plays in achieving the SDGs, we also pushed forward in our commitment to galvanise action towards responsible business practices and disclosures by issuing the NSE Sustainability Disclosure Guidelines and launching the Facts Behind the Sustainability Report series. These initiatives, amongst others, will have a far reaching impact on the practice of disclosure of non-financial activities across the private sector and further position the economy in favor of the big shift towards inclusive economic growth, driven by sustainable, responsible and impact investment”, Mr. Orojimi added.

The report was written in accordance with the “core” option of the Global Reporting Initiative (GRI) Standards and complies with the minimum requirements of the United Nations Global Compact (UNGC) Communication of Progress (COP). In addition, the report aligns with the reporting requirements of the NSE Sustainability Disclosure Guidelines. Prior to the 2019 sustainability report, the NSE has published five sustainability reports in accordance with the GRI sustainability reporting guidelines.

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