On 25 August, 2022, the Australasian Centre for Corporate Responsibility (“ACCR”) expanded its case against the Australian gas company, Santos Ltd. (“Santos”), with new and more detailed allegations around greenwashing.

Last year, ACCR filed a consumer protection lawsuit with the Federal Court of Australia regarding certain misleading or deceptive statements Santos

**A Chinese version of this blog post follows the English version.**

On 19 August 2022, the National Development and Reform Commission (“NDRC”), the National Bureau of Statistics (“NBS”), and the Ministry of Ecology and Environment (“MEE“) of the People’s Republic of China (“PRC”) jointly issued the “Implementation Plan on the Accelerating the Establishment of a Unified and Standardised Carbon Emission Statistical Accounting System (the “System”)” (the “Plan“).

Continue Reading China Issues a Plan to Establish a Carbon Emission Statistical Accounting System

In response to known challenges concerning ESG evaluation and data provision, including transparency and fairness of evaluation, and the expanding  role of organizations which provide these services, Japan has compiled a draft Code of Conduct for ESG Evaluation and Data Providers. The draft Code was published in July 2022 and can be read here.

**A Chinese version of this blog post follows the English version.**

China’s State Council-backed think tank, China Enterprise Reform and Development Society (“CERDS“), alongside a number of major Chinese companies including Ping An Insurance Company, issued “The Guidance for Enterprise ESG Disclosure” effective on 1 June 2022 (“Guidance“). The Guidance is China’s first ESG disclosure guideline, and covers all companies and industries.  It follows the environmental disclosure rules issued by China’s Ministry of Ecology and Environment (MEE) which came into effect earlier in February 2022 (which we reported here).

Continue Reading China issues first ESG disclosure guidance: international guidelines with Chinese characteristics

On 3 August 2022, Australia’s Financial Services Council (“FSC“) published FSC Guidance Note No 44 Climate Risk Disclosure in Investment Management (“Guidance Note”) to provide a set of common baseline expectations for the investment management industry’s approach with respect to net-zero commitments, disclosure of climate-friendly investment features and climate change risk reporting. 

Continue Reading Australia’s Financial Services Council issues new guidelines on climate risk disclosure for asset managers

On July 28, 2022, the Monetary Authority of Singapore (the “MAS“) published a circular (the “Circular”) on new disclosure and reporting guidelines for retail ESG funds in Singapore. The Circular was published alongside a Sustainability Report 2021/2022 issued by MAS and coincides with the issuance of Singapore’s first green bond (which was

In our blog post here, we discussed the amendments to the Stock Exchange of Hong Kong Limited’s (SEHK) Corporate Governance Code and Listing Rules, which prohibit single-gender boards among listed companies and IPO applicants in Hong Kong, effective from January 1, 2022. Existing issuers with single-gender boards will have a three-year transition period to

In May we published a legal update on the recent Australian federal election (here) and what a new Labor government may mean for the renewables industry in Australia. The note highlighted that no specific legislation was planned for hydrogen.

Australia’s states have been more active in trying to jump on the hydrogen bandwagon.

Vietnam’s Ministry of Industry and Trade (MOIT) on 20 May 2022 released a revised draft decision on the proposed direct power purchase agreement (DPPA) pilot scheme for stakeholder consultation (May 2022 Draft Decision). Vietnam is seeking to implement a DPPA pilot scheme which, for the first time, will enable renewable energy generators to sell clean electricity

On 23 February 2022, the European Commission published its much-anticipated draft corporate sustainability and due diligence directive (the “Draft Directive”).  The Draft Directive sets out a proposed EU standard for human rights and environmental due diligence (“HREDD”) which, importantly, would apply to any non-EU-based company and its subsidiaries  if those group companies have aggregate annual net turnover in the EU of:

  • more than EUR 150 million (Group 1); or
  • more than EUR 40 million with at least 50% of net worldwide turnover generated in a “high-risk” sector which includes textiles, clothing and footwear, agriculture, forestry, fisheries, food & extractives (Group 2).

Notably, the HREDD applies even if a company and its subsidiaries do not have a physical presence in the EU, if the above net turnover threshold is met.

The Draft Directive requires both Group 1 and Group 2 companies to take appropriate measures to identify, and mitigate, actual and potential adverse human rights and environmental impacts arising from their own operations anywhere in the world (not just in the EU) and, where related to their value chains, from their “established business relationships”.

Colleagues from our offices throughout the world have prepared briefings which are specific to particular locations, giving insights into related matters in those jurisdictions.

Continue Reading Human Rights and the Environment – What non-EU-based companies need to know regarding the EU draft Corporate Sustainability Due Diligence Directive