Euronext launches the BEL® ESG index


Euronext today announced the launch of the BEL® ESG index, a new index identifying and tracking the companies within the BEL® 20 and the BEL® Mid indices that have demonstrated the best ESG practices.

The BEL® ESG Index is designed to facilitate the adoption of mainstream ESG investment solutions by investors. It is the fifth ESG Index variant for national blue-chip indices, following the launch of the CAC® 40 ESG (France), the MIB® ESG (Italy), the AEX® ESG (The Netherlands) and the OBX® ESG (Norway).

For the index market data, Euronext has partnered with Sustainalytics, a leading global provider of ESG research, ratings and data. Sustainalytics provides the ESG assessment of companies for the composition of the index. The BEL® ESG has been designed to be fully compliant with the Central Labelling Agency’s ‘Towards Sustainability’ label, a high-quality standard for sustainable financial products such as indices and funds.

The BEL® ESG’s selection methodology is as follows:

  • The index universe comprises companies within the BEL® 20 and BEL® Mid indices meeting specific free float market cap and velocity criteria[1].
  • Exclusion filters are applied based on broad ESG standards and approaches adopted by institutional and private investors to exclude companies breaching Global Standards Principles[2] and companies with involvement in controversial activities (specific product involvement in Tobacco, Small Arms, Controversial Weapons, Military Contracting Weapons, Thermal Coal, Oil Sands, Shale Energy, Arctic Oil & Gas, Oil & Gas and Power Generation) according to Sustainalytics’ data[3].
  • An additional filter is applied to companies based on their Sustainalytics Subindustry ESG Risk Rating percentile ranking[4].
  • Eligible companies are ranked based on their Sustainalytics ESG ratings. The first 20 are selected and are free-float market capitalisation weighted in the BEL® ESG Index[5].

The composition of the index will be revised on a quarterly basis. The governance of the index will be aligned with the BEL Family rules.

The 20 companies composing the BEL® ESG on launch date are:

AB Inbev Ackermans & van Haaren Aedifica Aperam
Barco Bekaert Bpost Cofinimmo
Elia Group Fagron GBL KBC Group
Lotus Bakeries Proximus Shurgard Sofina
Solvay Telenet UCB WDP

Stéphane Boujnah, CEO and Chairman of the Managing Board of Euronext N.V.: “Euronext is committed to support companies taking ambitious steps towards more sustainable business models. By combining the recognized BEL brand with a stringent and consensual ESG methodology while maintaining liquidity, The BEL® ESG responds to the market’s growing demand for sustainable investment tools.

As a leading index provider in Europe, we are determined to accelerate the transition to sustainable investments through the launch of indices such as this new BEL® ESG index. Other countries are successfully moving into the space of domestic ESG blue chip indices, following the launch of the CAC® 40 ESG in France, the AEX® ESG in the Netherlands, the OBX® ESG in Norway and the MIB® ESG in Italy.”

Ita Demyttenaere, Director Client Relations, Sustainalytics: “We are pleased to support our partnership with Euronext through the launch of the BEL® ESG index – a significant milestone for the Belgian market thanks to its compliance with the Central Labelling Agency’s ‘Towards Sustainability’ label. Morningstar Sustainalytics’ ESG data and robust methodology advance the index’s credibility by considering the ESG risk exposure management of the largest companies based on market capitalisation.”

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