11. February 2021
The Accounting Standards Committee of Germany (“ASCG”/DRSC) has successfully completed its work on the ESG study commissioned by the German Federal Ministry of Justice and Consumer Protection (“the Ministry”). The 144-page final report was submitted to the Ministry at the end of January and made available to the public today on the respective websites.
On March 19, 2020, the Ministry commissioned the ASCG to conduct a study. The aim of the study was to determine how German companies comply with the reporting obligations on environmental, social and governance (“ESG”) aspects in connection with business activities, which were enshrined in the German Commercial Code in 2017 upon transposing the EU Non-Financial Reporting Directive (“NFRD”). As part of the work:
The final report contains detailed explanations of the results of the horizontal study. Key results include the following:
Based on the results from the horizontal study and the comments received at the outreach events, the Joint Technical Committee of the ASCG discussed recommendations for action in detail at several public meetings. The ASCG recommends, among other things:
On the occasion of the completion of the ESG study, the outgoing President of the ASCG, Prof Dr Andreas Barckow, commented as follows: “The study for which we were commissioned by the Ministry is the most extensive commissioned work in the history of the ASCG. Despite all the challenges posed by the pandemic, the ASCG’s staff, the members of the Joint Technical Committee and the supporting forces from various universities have produced an extremely high-quality result over the past ten months that stands up to any comparison. I am proud of and grateful for the tireless efforts of all those involved who have contributed to the success of this major and eminently important undertaking for the ASCG. I am certain that with our study, the Ministry will have a profound and well-grounded document in hand for the upcoming consultations on the revision of the NFR Directive.”
His designated successor in the office of President, Mr Georg Lanfermann, agrees: “I congratulate Andreas Barckow and his team on the successful completion of the study. This was a great effort, and I would particularly like to emphasize the enormous commitment of my predecessor in this regard. For me, the outstanding quality of this work is further proof that the ASCG is the right organization to pool the interests of German constituents in the field of non-financial reporting as well. The ASCG is in a position to competently represent these interests in a balanced manner. It is an honour for me to be able to further develop this topic in accordance with the strategy of the Administrative Board as of March. I would like to establish the ASCG as a central point of contact for corporate reporting across the board. With this in mind, I look forward to exchanging ideas with our members and all stakeholder groups, but also to continuing our successful cooperation with the Ministry.”