The KPMG survey has tracked companies’ adoption of the 17 UN SDGs since their launch in 2015. The SDGs have resonated strongly with companies, with big progress in reporting on them between 2017 and 2020 .
And yet, we’ve only seen incremental growth in adoption over the past 2 years. The data shows a 2% increase in the N100 (to 71%) and a 2% increase in the G250, where three quarters of the G250 now report on the SDGs.
Global SDG Reporting Rates (2017-2022)
Base: 4,581 N100 companies and 240 G250 companies reporting on sustainability or ESG issues
Source: KPMG survey on sustainability reporting 2022, KPMG International, September 2022
Asia-Pacific and Latin America continue to lead SDG reporting
In 2022, we see 12 countries, territories and jurisdictions where 75% or more of the top 100 companies reference the SDGs in their sustainability reports. Four of them are in the Asia-Pacific region. Thailand leads with 93% of companies identifying specific SDGs most relevant to business.
While this strong geographical spread suggests that the SDGs are fully integrated around the world, reporting rates in Eastern Europe (61%) and the Middle East (65%) can still improve.
In the G250, 100% of German companies refer to the SDGs. The growing references to the SDGs among Chinese companies are also impressive, rising from 5% of companies in 2017 to 56% in 2022.
Opportunity for improvement for a balanced report on the SDGs
In the N100 and G250, the vast majority of companies only report on the positive impacts they have on the SDGs, with only a tenth of N100 companies and a third of G250 companies considering both positive and negative on the SDGs.
The research also showed that more companies are reporting on specific SDGs, with 10% of companies reporting on all 17 SDGs. Three SDGs remain the most popular with businesses: 8: Decent work and economic growth; 12: Responsible consumption and production; and 13: Climate action. Few companies prioritize the following three SDGs that relate to 2: Zero Hunger; 14: Life under water; and 15: Life on Earth.
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