Published and draft legislation - Spain

Procedure for publishing Social Responsibility Reports

Order ESS/1554/2016, 29th September

This Ministerial Order has been enacted as part of the Spanish Corporate Social Responsibility Strategy. It picks up on the recommendations made on this subject by the European Union and on other initiatives by organisations and international bodies such as the Organisation for Economic Cooperation and Development (OECD), the United Nations and the International Labour Organisation (ILO), among others.

There are currently a large number of institutions, both public and private, publishing social responsibility reports, annual and otherwise, that inform the market about their good practice or results obtained by applying policies designed to foment environmental sustainability, good governance and responsible consumption.

This order has two goals: to give initiatives and policies developed by undertakings and organisations more visibility; and to enable institutions covered by the scope of Directive 2014/95/EU of the European Parliament and of the Council of 22 October  (hereinafter, the EU Directive) to disclose non-financial and diversity information.

The Order affects companies, organisations, institutions, public and private entities, public administrations and those institutions that have to apply the EU Directive (public interest institutions with more than 500 employees during the financial year, at their reporting date).

PUBLIC FILE

The Order provides for the creation of a public file on line, on the Ministry for Employment & Social Security website, where annual and other reports will be uploaded. The information contained should cover the following:

  • Good corporate governance
  • Commitment to the environment
  • Information on environmental, social and good governance issues (ESG criteria)
  • Fight against corruption and bribery
  • Improvement in labour relations
  • Stakeholder opinions
  • Policies of universal access and inclusion of groups at risk of social exclusion
  • Diversity and equality policies
  • Respect, protection and defence of human rights
  • Transparency in the undertaking’s management
  • Other areas that demonstrate a commitment to the values and principles of corporate social responsibility and sustainability

REGISTRATION AND PUBLICATION PROCEDURE

A specific procedure for registering and publishing social responsibility and sustainability reports has been defined. Furthermore, companies that are required to apply the EU Directive and follow this procedure will be exempted from having to present non-financial and diversity information in a separate document from the management report.

In order for the undertakings to be able to apply to publish their reports, they should present a statement of responsibility certifying the truth of the information supplied. They should, likewise, specify whether the annual report has been prepared using any particular model, and whether it has been verified or audited by any external body.

The registration and publication procedure will be online and consist of two phases, which are regulated in article 4 of the Order.

COMMITMENT TO SOCIETY

This measure seeks to foment transparency in public and private undertakings, and to support the development of responsible practices, so that they become a significant driver of competitiveness, while encouraging inclusive and sustainable growth in society.