New non-financial disclosure rules in the Swiss Code of Obligations

Fact of the Month
March 7, 2022

Following the refusal of the initiative on responsible corporations, the parliament’s counter-project entered into force in January 2022 through an amendment of the Swiss Code of obligations.

Listed companies, financial institutions and businesses with at least 500 employees and over CHF 20 millions in assets or CHF 40 millions in sales volume are subject to these new disclosure rules.

Impacted companies must publish a yearly report, which includes the following information:

- Description of the business model

- Description of the risk-management concept and due diligence

- Identification of relevant risks across the supply chain

- Risk impact assessment, risk avoidance and risk mitigating measures

- Description of KPIs

The report targets specifically environmental, social, human rights and corruption matters and must be published the first time in 2024 for the year 2023.

Furthermore, companies that already disclose their non-financial information in accordance with a disclosure standard such as the OECD Guidelines for Multinationals, are not meant to disclose a separate reportif the standard covers the legal minimum.

Switzerland has in this way chosen to follow the path laid by the European Union in order to incentivise companies to improve their CSR practices. Our Team is at your disposal shall you need any assistance in this regard.

In addition, we will be sharing more details on the changes affecting non-financial information disclosure in the future.

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