Today we have published a new Roadmap setting out the steps British International Investment will take to become more transparent.
As a publicly-owned body, the information we publish about our investments, our operations and our governance holds us accountable to a range of stakeholders, including Parliament and the public.
We have a strong track record on being transparent and recognise we can continue to make improvements. We were the first development finance institution to sign up to the International Aid Transparency Initiative and one of the first to make our investment information publicly available.
Since adopting our Transparency and Disclosure Policy in 2017, we have expanded our external reporting. This has included committing to a broad range of voluntary disclosures, including reporting under the Operating Principles for Impact Management (OPIM), the United Nations Principles for Responsible Investment (UN PRI) and the Task Force on Climate-related Financial Disclosures (TCFD). We are also subject to the Freedom of Information Act 2000, the Environmental Information Regulations 2004 and UK data protection laws.
The Government’s International Development White Paper sets the ambition for BII to aim to become the most transparent bilateral development finance institution. Our new Roadmap sets timebound deliverables across five priority areas:
• Embedding the foundations for success
• Applying international standards
• Increasing data timeliness, quality and usability
• Demonstrating the impact of our investments
• Managing environmental, social and governance risks
The Roadmap follows the guidance of Publish What You Fund’s (PWYF) transparency tool and integrates it, where possible, into our existing practices of disclosing information and sharing knowledge and lessons.
Rt Hon Andrew Mitchell MP, Minister for Development and Africa said, “I am pleased to support the launch of BII’s Transparency Roadmap. This sets out how BII will deliver on its goal to be the most transparent bilateral development finance institution in the world, an ambition set out in our recently published International Development White Paper.
“Transparency is crucial to show the real impact of BII’s investments in some of the poorest and most fragile places in the world and to demonstrate how BII’s investments are transforming economies and delivering value to our taxpayers.”
We aim to disclose information on our investments and operations that provide value to those outside BII, such as those who might be interested in investing in the countries where we invest and those who need to hold us to account. This requires balancing the public nature of what we do with the commercial status of our investee businesses.