Crisa a step closer to end of the Wild West

Finweek English Edition - - BUSINESS TRENDS - LEANI WES­SELS leaniw@fin­

BE­LIEVE IT OR NOT, reg­u­la­tion and re­spon­si­ble busi­ness prac­tices will take over from the era of “profit at all costs” and one of the big in­dus­tries that will be un­der the spot­light will be in­sti­tu­tional in­vest­ments. Pen­sion funds and in­vest­ment man­agers are now for­mally en­cour­aged to in­te­grate sus­tain­abil­ity is­sues – such as the en­vi­ron­men­tal, so­cial and gov­er­nance – into their in­vest­ment de­ci­sions through the Code for Re­spon­si­ble In­vest­ing in South Africa (Crisa). While we’d love to see cer­tain fund man­agers be­ing given a good scare out of their com­fort zones, it’s likely to be a pretty or­derly process.

“The code is the next step to en­sur­ing in­sti­tu­tional in­vestors ac­tu­ally im­ple­ment poli­cies that guide their day-to-day ac­tions when it comes to re­spon­si­ble in­vest­ing,” says John Oliphant, chair­man of the stake­holder com­mit­tee that drafted the code last year.

Crisa ap­plies to in­sti­tu­tional in­vestors, such as pen­sion funds and in­surance com­pa­nies, as the own­ers of as­sets, and their ser­vice providers, in­clud­ing as­set man­agers and con­sul­tants. The ef­fec­tive date for re­port­ing on the ap­pli­ca­tion of Crisa is 1 Fe­bru­ary next year.

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