Material topics

In 2018, we carried out a materiality survey following the standards of the Global Reporting Initiative. This resulted in 14 topics, ranked by FMO’s key stakeholders in order of importance, and degree to which they believed FMO had an impact.[1] The top right quadrant represents material topics that are perceived as highly important and impactful.

In 2019, we concluded – based on stakeholder dialogue and desk research – that these topics were still most relevant to our stakeholders and therefore material for FMO. Although overall the materiality matrix shows the same material topics as last year, for FMO's Management Board a few topics have become more material. First, the organization invested heavily in Know Your Customer (KYC) procedures. These should ensure that FMO does not facilitate corruption, organized crime, or terrorism. Following an investigation by the Dutch Central Bank in 2018, we realized we needed to increase our efforts and attention towards our KYC approach and other compliance matters. KYC is included as a sub-topic under the material topic 'business integrity'. In chapter Our performance we explain our approach to business integrity and KYC. Second, FMO has received increased scrutiny from stakeholders and the media with respect to ESG, including human rights. As a result, we have increased our efforts to improve internal management information and external transparency on ESG as you will read in this report.  Third, we welcome the increased attention from investors towards climate-related matters. In the Our Commitments chapter we explain our approach in relation to the recommendations of the Task Force for Climate-related Financial Disclosure (TCFD). 

Our materiality assessment shows that our strategy and reporting continue to meet stakeholders’ expectations. There is consensus among our stakeholders on the importance of sustainable economic growth, reducing inequalities (both part of Development impact through responsible investing), and climate action (Environmental footprint of FMO’s investments). Furthermore, our stakeholders confirm the importance of financial sustainability and risk appetite. A strong balance sheet and profitable operations allow us to further increase our investments for impact. They also allow FMO to act as a catalyst by attracting partners to co-finance our businesses and projects. Finally, the results confirm that being accountable and transparent is conditional to our role as a development bank.

  • 1 A more detailed explanation of the assessment is included in ‘How we report’. For a full list of topics and subtopics please see the GRI general disclosures table.