Brussels, 2nd June 2023

The Federation of the European Sporting Goods Industry (FESI) welcomes the results of the vote on the Corporate Sustainability Due Diligence Directive (CSDDD) that took place on the 1st of June in the European Parliament. FESI and its members support the objectives of the proposed directive. However, due to the inherent complexity and sensitivity of the subject which took international organisations decades to address, we acknowledge that the adopted text is not entirely pragmatic.

“For some parts of the text, such as alignment with existing international standards, the Parliament’s position represents a positive development in relation to the original proposal of the Commission and for that I congratulate the Rapporteur and Shadow Rapporteurs in the Parliament for their efforts. However, there is still a number of issues in need for improvement, in particular as regards to “directors’ duties” that are redundant with Corporate Governance law and a certain lack of harmonisation. I’m hopeful that the trilogues will be an opportunity to further improve the text in the interest of companies but also enforcement authorities”, commented Jérôme Pero, FESI Secretary General.

FESI welcomes the adoption of a risk-based approach and prioritisation of potential and actual impacts based on the severity and likelihood of the said impact as a step in the right direction. The ability to prioritise and develop appropriate action steps to address the most salient risks is a fundamental element of the due diligence process that has proven to be most effective in addressing adverse impacts.

In addition, FESI supports the European Parliament’s progress towards harmonisation and avoidance of further internal market fragmentation. Nevertheless, the sporting goods industry regrets that the concerns regarding the insufficient harmonisation were only partly addressed, potentially allowing 27 Due Diligence legislations to flourish beyond the existing proposal in the coming years.

The maintenance of the references to the directors’ duties of care will have negative side effects, including the disruption of existing and well-established governance models, without added value to the ability of companies to apply effective due diligence. Considering the deletion of Article 26 on “enforcement of directors’ duties”, welcomed by FESI, the Federation wishes to highlight the newly created incoherence with the remaining reference to the directors’ duties in the adopted text, hoping that the upcoming trilogues will clarify the gap and consider asks of the companies operating on the EU market.

FESI is looking forward to the launch of the trilogues and urges the policy-makers to address the most salient issues around harmonisation, adequate prioritisation, and unnecessary interference with corporate governance through such tools as directors’ duties. The Federation, on behalf of its members, will continue to advocate for better EU legislation.


About FESI: The Federation of the European Sporting Goods Industry (FESI) is the pre-competitive platform representing the interests of the sporting goods industry in Europe, advancing its members’ priorities and promoting initiatives that benefit the sector, EU citizens and the society as a whole. FESI is the sole stakeholder that provides sporting goods companies with the possibility to leverage their expertise into one steady and coherent voice.

 Contact: Ariane Gatti, FESI Communication Manager / [email protected] /+32 (0)2 762 86 48