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Navigating the currents of ESG expectations: Survey Report on ESG perceptions and practices of Canadian Fund Managers

BLG’s Investment Management Group surveyed a range of Canadian fund managers about their administration and disclosure practices for funds that consider environmental, social and governance (ESG) factors in a material way in their investment process (ESG Funds). We looked at a variety of market trends and ESG regulatory developments impacting investment funds, including the Canadian Securities Administrators’ (CSA) Staff Notice 81-334 ESG-Related Investment Fund Disclosure (the Staff Notice) and related securities regulatory reviews (ESG Sweeps).

We launched the Survey with the goal of sharing regulatory and industry trends on ESG matters impacting Canadian investment funds with our clients. The data from the Survey can help fund managers benchmark their regulatory practices against those of peers through insights that are specific to the Canadian market. In this Report we highlight our findings about the practices fund managers have adopted in response to rapidly-evolving global ESG standards, taxonomies and data availability, and how they have been responding to the regulatory expectations of the CSA as communicated through the Staff Notice and the comment letters received by firms that were subject to ESG Sweeps.

The last section of the Report leverages BLG’s industry insights to provide a roadmap of how fund managers can position themselves, their funds and investors for success in this rapidly changing ESG ecosystem. Our Report is particularly timely as we wait for the CSA to consolidate the findings of the ESG Sweeps and update the Staff Notice, and as global standards continue to emerge, be refined and implemented.

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