As a global exchange group that is home to the world's leading companies, NYSE Euronext's commitment signals the significance of sustainability to the private sector globally.
In remarks delivered today at the New York Stock Exchange, United Nations Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon commended the company for its commitment to improve corporate behaviour and promote sustainable investment. The Secretary-General also rang the NYSE closing bell to commemorate the occasion.
"The addition of the world's largest stock exchange to this group is a significant forward step signalling the importance and relevance of sustainability to the private sector around the world," said the UN Secretary-General. "I thank NYSE Euronext for committing to the Sustainable Stock Exchanges initiative and I urge stock exchanges around the world to follow their lead."
UN Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon ringing the NYSE closing bell
Established in 2009 by the United Nations Secretary-General, the SSE initiative explores how stock exchanges can work together with investors, regulators and companies to enhance corporate transparency - and ultimately performance - on environmental, social and corporate governance (ESG) issues, and encourage responsible long-term approaches to investment.
"We are proud to join the SSE initiative and partner with the UN and our industry to support best practices in corporate governance and transparency related to corporate sustainability," said Mr. Duncan L. Niederauer, CEO of NYSE Euronext. "We lead by example by running our business in an environmentally responsible manner; and by leveraging the unique power of our platform and our NYSE Euronext community, we empower learning and collaboration within the broader corporate sector."
Mr. James Zhan, Director of UNCTAD's Investment
and Enterprise Division
"We welcome this important commitment from NYSE," said Mr. James Zhan, Director of UNCTAD's Division on Investment and Enterprise. "Creating more sustainable capital markets will help us generate the type of investments that we need to promote sustainable development around the world."
At the Rio+20 Earth Summit held in Brazil in 2012, UNCTAD Secretary-General Supachai Panitchpakdi issued an invitation to stock exchanges around the world to join the SSE initiative.
Since Mr. Supachai's call to action, eight stock exchanges with more than 13,000 listed companies have signed the SSE Voluntary Commitment to promote sustainability issues.
As corporate sustainability continues to gain momentum globally, the SSE provides a unique platform for stock exchanges to develop customized strategies to contribute to the sustainable development goals of United Nations Member States.
The SSE initiative is co-organized by UNCTAD, the United Nations Global Compact, the UN-supported Principles for Responsible Investment, and the United Nations Environment Programme's Finance Initiative - demonstrating the "One UN" model of collaboration to deliver on United Nations goals to advance sustainable development.