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Link to Full Report:

In January 2016, the Principles for Responsible Investment (PRI), UN Environment Finance Initiative (UNEP FI) and The Generation Foundation launched a three-year project – Fiduciary Duty in the 21st Century – that aims to clarify investors’ fiduciary duties at national and international levels to include environmental, social and governance (ESG) issues. Since its launch, the project has: • Engaged with over 400 policy makers and investors to raise awareness of the importance of ESG issues to the fiduciary duties of investors. • Published the Global Statement on Investor Obligations and Duties, which has now been signed by 123 signatories from 22 countries. • Published and started to implement roadmaps on the policy changes required to achieve full incorporation of ESG issues into investment processes and practices across eight countries (Australia, Brazil, Canada, Germany, Japan, South Africa, the United Kingdom and the United States). • Extended the research into fiduciary duties – and, more broadly, investor duties – to six Asian markets: China, Hong Kong, India, Korea, Malaysia and Singapore. • Hosted over 20 workshops and conferences with investors and regulators in 14 countries to discuss regulatory clarification and investor practice on ESG integration as part of the fiduciary duties of investors. • Engaged with the European Commission High-Level Expert Group (HLEG) on Sustainable Finance to help formulate recommendations on EU-wide clarification of investor duties

Acknowledging the significant progress in China over the past decade in green and sustainable finance, the recommendations aim to accelerate the rate at which China’s investors align their practices with the goals of green finance and sustainable development.

“This project, driven by the progress of green finance and a rising interest in ESG integration in China, builds knowledge and shares experience among policy makers and investors on how integration of material ESG factors contributes to long-term sustainability,” said Eric Usher, Head of the UN Environment Finance Initiative.

“China is emerging as an unequivocal driver of global climate change mitigation, sustainability and green finance. Their bold efforts at addressing climate change, as well as transforming the country’s economic structure, are leading the global agenda,” said Fiona Reynolds, CEO of the Principles for Responsible Investment.

“As part of aligning financial markets with China’s development goals, asset managers are increasingly integrating ESG factors into their investment decisions,” said Wang Yao, director general of the International Institute of Green Finance.

“The comprehensive approach of this report is an important contribution to this agenda, providing tangible recommendations within guidance, regulation, disclosure, standards, and investor education.”

{United Nations Environment Programme – Finance Initiative (UNEP FI) is a partnership between United Nations Environment and the global financial sector created in the wake of the 1992 Earth Summit with a mission to promote sustainable finance. More than 200 financial institutions, including banks, insurers, and investors, work with UN Environment to understand today’s environmental, social and governance challenges, why they matter to finance, and how to actively participate in addressing them.}

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