Given Nigeria’s ambitious climate goals to reduce greenhouse gas emissions by 47% by 2030, conditional on international support, the Chief Executive Officer of Nigerian Exchange Regulation Limited, Ms. Tinuade Awe, has urged all critical stakeholders to prioritize implementing initiatives that positively benefit the environment and combat climate change. Awe stated this during the Financial Reporting Council of Nigeria (FRCN) Stakeholder Engagement Session on Mainstreaming Nigeria’s Collaborative Action on Climate Related Risks and Disclosures on Thursday, 26 May 2022.
Speaking at the event organized by FRCN in collaboration with Growing Businesses Foundation (GBF), Afrikairos Foundation and International Financial Reporting Standards (IFRS) Foundation, Awe highlighted the increasing global trend in climate related disclosure and regulations, and encouraged companies to incorporate Environmental, Social and Governance (ESG) factors into their business operations, activities and reporting processes as a critical step to ensuring that they are positioned to align with the rapidly evolving regulations and guidance on sustainability and climate disclosure.
She explained that “In Nigeria, the Federal Government has localized the global call by committing to achieving a net-zero economy by 2060 and signing the Climate Change Act 2021 into law. This policy is consistent with Nigeria’s vision to be a low-carbon, climate-resilient, high growth circular economy that reduces its current level of emissions by 50 per cent by 2050, as captured in the 2050 Long-Term vision for the Nigerian economy which was issued by the Department of Climate Change, Federal Ministry of Environment in 2021.”
On the role that NGX Regulation has played to promote sustainability reporting, Awe said, “At NGX Regulation, we are committed to fostering the adoption of sustainable business practices and disclosure amongst companies listed on Nigerian Exchange Limited. This is evidenced by our leading role in the development and issuance of the NGX Sustainability Disclosure Guidelines in 2019 which has provided support for companies seeking guidance on sustainability reporting practices. NGX Regulation also played a leading role in developing guidance for the capital market on the issuance of green bonds in 2016, and championed efforts along with government and industry stakeholders that culminated in the issuance of the maiden N10.69 billion (c. $25.8 million) 13.48 per cent 5-year green bond in 2017”.
Speaking on her organisation’s plans to promote climate disclosure, She noted that NGX Regulation is well positioned to lead the capital market to address climate change through effective climate disclosure, saying “we launched the Climate Awareness Initiative in collaboration with Nigerian Exchange Limited in April 2022 and hosted a two-part market-wide training on climate disclosure facilitated by experts from International Finance Corporation (IFC), Sustainable Stock Exchanges (SSE) Initiative and Carbon Disclosure Programme (CDP).
“Our unwavering commitment to address climate change has also inspired us to commence the development of the NGX Climate Disclosure Guidelines, a dedicated set of guidelines for listed companies on global best practice in climate disclosure in line with the recommendations of the Task Force for Climate Related Financial Disclosure (TCFD) framework leveraging the Action Plan on how stock exchanges can integrate the TCFD recommendations issued by the Sustainable Stock Exchanges Initiative (SSEI) in 2021. We plan to publish our zero draft in a few months after which we will initiate a public consultation for feedback”.