ESG in Italy - Embracing sustainability

ESG has grown as a central topic in the agendas of major organisations, worldwide as in Italy.

Linklaters advises the Joint Lead Managers on Europe’s first ever general purpose SDG linked bond

The discussions on such themes is indeed “hot”, but what are organisations really doing to this end? A practical response to such themes is not always easy to be found, as a lack of proper guidance makes it hard for companies to direct investments to specific ESG targets.

  • Is this lack going to jeopardise a real shift by decision makers in this direction?
  • What do good practices look like, and how do you achieve tangible results?

Our new video collection, which goes hand in hand with the Firm’s attention to embrace sustainability and recognise and address environmental, social and governance risks, tries to respond to all these questions. We interviewed major experts from major companies in the Italian landscape by asking where they are right now and where they are going.

What’s on the horizon - legal and regulatory developments

January 2021

The EU's new Conflict Minerals Regulation


February 2021

ESAs delivered draft RTS under SFDR to the Commission
  • On 4 February 2021, the Joint Committee of the three European Supervisory Authorities (EBA, EIOPA and ESMA – ESAs) delivered to the European Commission the Final Report, including the draft Regulatory Technical Standards (RTS), on the content, methodologies and presentation of disclosures under the EU Regulation on sustainability-related disclosures in the financial services sector (SFDR).
Taxonomy draft advice on transparency of undertakings in non-financial statements
  • In September 2020, the Commission issued a call for advice to the three European Supervisory Authorities – the European Markets and Securities Authority (ESMA), the European Insurance and Occupational Pensions Authority (EIOPA) and the European Banking Authority (EBA) - requesting their input on the content, methodology and presentation of the KPIs that non-financial and financial undertakings are required to disclose under Article 8 of the Taxonomy Regulation. ESMA, EIOPA and the EBA need to submit their advice to the Commission by 28 February 2021 - so that the Commission can adopt the delegated act by 1 June 2021.
European Commission’s consultation on sustainable corporate governance
Discussion Paper on management and supervision of ESG risks for credit institutions and investment firms (EBA/DP/2020/03)

March 2021

ESAP: Commission consultation closes
  • The consultation on the establishment of a European single access point (ESAP) for financial and non-financial information publicly disclosed by companies will end on 3 March 2021.

    The purpose of the targeted questionnaire is to seek general and technical views on the way to establish a European single access point (ESAP) for companies’ financial and sustainable investment-related information made public pursuant to EU legislation.
SFDR RTS: ESAs to issue a public supervisory statement
  • The ESAs plan to issue a public supervisory statement before the application date of SFDR in order to achieve an effective and consistent application of the SFDR’s requirements and consistent national supervision of the SFDR.
The Sustainable Finance Disclosure Regulation (Regulation (EU) 2019/2088)

April 2021

Commission’s review of the NFRD (Directive (EU) 2014/95)

May 2021

Renewed Strategy on Sustainable Finance
  • The Commission is expected to adopt the Renewed Strategy on Sustainable Finance in May 2021.

Coming months

New Corporate Governance Code
Transposition of the SHRD II in Italy
Sustainable corporate governance Initiative: Commission adoption
  • The European Commission is expected to publish a legislative proposal on sustainable corporate governance. Its adoption is planned for Q2 2021. It envisages, among others, to impose an obligation on companies operating in the EU to undertake mandatory human rights and environmental due diligence in their global operations and supply chains.
EU Green Bond Standard: Commission proposal
  • According to the 2021 Commission Work Programme, the legislative proposal is scheduled to be delivered in Q2 2021.
2019-2020 European Delegation Law

LinkChat: 5 minutes with…

Episode 1

Paolo Bertolini, our head of public law, interviews Giovanna Giusti del Giardino, Head of Group Sustainability, Mediobanca Group. The interview, conducted in Italian, focuses on human rights, environment and sustainability and aims to cover, in a nutshell, what Mediobanca is doing to such extent.

Watch now >

Episode 2

Paolo Bertolini, our head of public law, interviews Giulia Genuardi, Head of Sustainability Planning and Performance Management, Enel. The interview, conducted in Italian, focuses on the hardship of balancing social/environmental aspects with commercial needs and the relevance of circular economy.

Watch now >

Episode 3

Linda Taylor, our co-head of Italian ESG practice, interviews Nicole della Vedova, Head of Corporate Finance, Enel. The interview focuses on Enel’s journey in the sustainable finance market and on sustainability-linked bonds. 

Watch now >


Welcome to Linklaters Italy's ESG GEMS, a monthly update on ESG issues that brings to your attention the most relevant topics in the Environmental, Social and Governance area.

This newsletter is available to our clients with subscriptions to our Knowledge Portal only.

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