The release of the 17th portfolio of the B3 Corporate Sustainability Index (ISE B3) brought data that indicate a welcome increase in the engagement of Brazilian companies listed with the ESG (environmental, social and governance) agenda. The number of companies in the portfolio went from 40 last year to 46 in this edition and the number of sectors jumped from 15 to 27. According to B3, together, the companies total R$ 1.74 trillion in market value, 38 .26% of the total value of companies with shares traded on B3, based on the closing date of December 30, 2021. In other words, there is still a lot to evolve.
Even the record number of participants needs to be more carefully evaluated. In the middle of last year, the institution changed the ISE methodology precisely to make it more attractive to companies. They reduced the registration fee, simplified the questionnaire, adjusted the questions considering the sector in which the company operates, adopted the CDP-Climate scoring to assess the ‘climate change’ dimension and incorporated the reputational risk score calculated by RepRisk. This year’s balance sheet numbers prove that the strategy worked.
The high point of the Index, however, is another. The information extracted from the answers given by the companies in the submission questionnaire indicates a growing concern with aspects of governance, diversity and the environment. Some highlights:
- 99% of the companies indicated that they offer their employees formal, independent and easily accessible mechanisms for complaints related to cases of moral, sexual harassment, racism, homophobia, transphobia and other forms of prejudice against minority groups, including their own and outsourced employees.
- 93% of the companies indicated having an area, instance or person responsible for ensuring the implementation of actions to promote and enhance diversity.
Regarding the diversity agenda in the boards of directors:
— 78% of companies have at least one woman as a full member of their boards.
— 11% of companies have at least one black member of their boards.
— 4% of companies have at least one LGBTQIA+ representative as a full member on their boards.
- 99% of the companies indicated that they have a corporate policy that includes the topic of relationship with the local community.
- 96% of the companies indicated as one of their commitments to sustainable development the fight against climate change and its impacts.
Here there is another point to be noted, the self-declared answer is still valid for the questionnaire. For more assertive statements that the ESG agenda is in fact evolving in Brazil, it is imperative that actions are validated by impartial companies, with criteria that can be comparable, at least between companies in the same sector. This governance of good practices is still a gray area that becomes problems — such as rules for granting credit — in Brazil and abroad.
The following companies are part of the 17th portfolio: AES Brasil Energia, Americanas SA, Ambipar, Arezzo, Azul, Bradesco, Banco do Brasil, BTG, Braskem, BRF, CCR, Cemig, Cia Brasileira de Distribuição, Cielo, Copel, Cosan, CPFL , Duratex, Ecorodovias, EDP, Engie, Fleury, Iochpe Maxion, Itaú Unibanco, Itausa, Klabin, Light, Lojas Renner, M Dias Branco, Magazine Luiza, Minerva, Movida, MRV, Natura, Neoenergia, Raia Drogasil, Rumo, Santander, Simpar, Sul America, Suzano, Telefônica, Tim, Via Varejo, Vibra and Weg.
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