Accountancy Europe on assurance of EU ESG disclosures
Accountancy Europe has released an interesting discussion paper on sustainability assurance under the proposed Corporate Sustainability Reporting Directive (CSRD). The CSRD introduces an EU-wide requirement for limited assurance on sustainability information, with the end goal to move to reasonable assurance in the longer term. This includes assurance on filers’ compliance on digital tagging of sustainability data – and Accountancy Europe notes that standard setters, regulators, and reporting entities should support global digital taxonomies
The paper seeks to provide insights from practice on key matters relating to this new assurance requirement. These include the information subject to assurance, assurance level and the pathway to reasonable assurance, dealing with forward-looking information, consistent high quality and establishing a level playing field for practitioners, ensuring that assurance standards are fit-for-purpose, preconditions for an assurance engagement, and the content of the assurance report. It also poses questions to stakeholders, including policy makers and standard setters, to reach a common understanding on the practical implications of the rules. “Debating these matters early will ensure high quality and consistent application of assurance services across the EU,” says Accountancy Europe.