On 29 December 2022, the Trustees of the IFRS Foundation signed a Memorandum of Understanding (MoU) with the Ministry of Finance of China to establish a Beijing office of the IFRS Foundation. The MoU is effective for an initial three-year period.
The signing of the MoU follows the COP26 announcement of the International Sustainability Standards Board (ISSB) and its global and multi-location presence by the Trustees.
The Beijing office, established as a representative office, is expected to open in mid-2023. The office will work in collaboration and cooperation with other IFRS Foundation offices around the globe, with staff focused on leading and executing the ISSB’s strategy for emerging and developing economies, acting as a hub for stakeholder engagement in Asia, facilitating deeper co-operation and engagement with stakeholders, and undertaking capacity-building activities for emerging economies, developing countries and SMEs. The office will host meetings of the ISSB and its various advisory bodies and serve as a base initially for ISSB Member Bing Leng. ISSB Vice-Chair Jingdong Hua, who is responsible for overseeing the ISSB’s engagement across all developing and emerging economies, will regularly visit the office.
Commenting on the announcement Erkki Liikanen, Chair of the IFRS Foundation Trustees, said:
When we announced the ISSB at COP26, we confirmed the new board would have a global presence through a multi-location model. The announcement of the Beijing office is an important step towards the establishment of our global footprint in the ISSB's inaugural year. I would like to thank our Chinese colleagues for their commitment to the work of the ISSB and look forward to the successful opening of the office in 2023.
Emmanuel Faber, ISSB Chair, said:
China is the world’s second largest economy and plays a vital role in supply chains for companies around the world—making it an important jurisdiction as the ISSB develops its global baseline of sustainability disclosures for the capital markets. The Beijing office will play a vital role in this endeavour.
Jingdong Hua, ISSB Vice-Chair, said:
The Beijing office has an important role to play in facilitating the full and active engagement of developing and emerging economies in the work of the ISSB. I look forward to working with colleagues to ensure its success.
Zhongming Zhu, Vice Minister of Finance China, said:
The signing of the MOU for the Beijing office marks a milestone in the deepening of cooperation between MoF China and the Foundation. We hope that it will serve as the beginning of a new journey that will witness closer cooperation between the two sides towards development and promotion of ISSB’s high-quality international sustainability disclosure standards. Let us work together to bring the Beijing office fully into shape as soon as possible, build it into a hub for engagement, cooperation, capacity building and innovation in our common effort to contribute to the global sustainable development.
Cui Shuqiang, Deputy Mayor of the Beijing Municipal Government, said:
We welcome the Foundation’s decision to set up an office in Beijing, well in line with the city’s aspiration to establish itself as a hub for international engagement. We will continue to steadfastly support the endeavours of the Foundation and MoF China, provide assistance and facilitation to ensure the successful establishment and operation of the Beijing office, stay committed to the philosophy of green development and build our city into a paragon of sustainable development.