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Company Response

8 Mar 2024

FTSE Russell's response

8 March 2024

FTSE Russell Response: Complaint by Inclusive Development International, Blood Money Campaign Myanmar, and Alternative ASEAN Network on Burma to the UK National Contact Point for Responsible Business Conduct (UK NCP).

Thank you for the opportunity to respond to the complaint filed by Inclusive Development International, Blood Money Campaign Myanmar, and Alternative ASEAN Network on Burma to the UK NCP.

The complaint has been filed based on research undertaken by the complainants, which includes claims against FTSE Russell, an LSEG business, and other index providers. The complainants allege that FTSE Russell and its peers are directly linked to adverse impacts in Myanmar through companies which are constituents of its ESG indices.

FTSE Russell, and LSEG business, has acknowledged this complaint via correspondence with Inclusive Development International (IDI) directly and has engaged and shared information with IDI since 2022. It takes all inquiries and complaints seriously and is committed to engaging with the UK NCP complaints handling process.

LSEG is committed to respecting and promoting the human rights of people affected by its operations. It aims to operate in accordance with the International Bill of Human Rights and considers the UN Guiding Principles on Business and Human Rights and the International Labour Organisation Declaration on Fundamental Principles and Rights at Work.

LSEG does not wish to be complicit in any abuse of human rights through its business relationships and the provision of its products. It recognises its responsibility to take action to prevent its services from being used in connection with illegal human rights related activities.

Regarding FTSE ESG indices, data sets relevant to human rights considerations include assessments of ESG disclosures and corporate conduct (often referred to as controversy assessments). FTSE Russell considers corporate human rights disclosures as part of the human rights & community theme within the FTSE ESG score, assessing companies against key criteria drawn from relevant international standards (including the UN Guiding Principles on Business and Human Rights Reporting Framework, the Corporate Human Rights Benchmark, the Sustainability Accounting Standards Board (SASB), and the Global Reporting Initiative (GRI)). A summary of this approach can be found here.

As part of its governance framework, FTSE Russell reviews its index methodologies on an ongoing basis, and will carefully consider the feedback provided in the complaint.