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ESEF Reporting

We are providing a service for listed companies that fall in scope to report in xHTML. Our service includes the mapping of the taxonomy, as well as the output of the audit/regulator ready xHTML report.





The European Single Electronic format

Article 4(7) of the Transparecy Directive (TD) assigns ESMA with the responsibility to draft Regulatory Technical Standards (RTS) specifying a European Single Electronic Format (ESEF) in which all annual financial reports of issuers with securities listed on regulated markets shall be prepared. The RTS shall apply to annual financial reports containing financial statements for financial years beginning on or after 1 January 2020. According to the TD, ESMA is required to:


  • Make due reference to current and future technological options;
  • Carry out an adequate assessment of possible electronic reporting formats;
  • Conduct appropriate field tests


Article 10 of the ESMA Regulation requires ESMA, where appropriate, to conduct public consultations on draft technical standards, analyse the potential related costs and benefits, and request the opinion of the Securities and Markets Stakeholders Group (SMSG). ESMA has published a Consultation Paper (CP) on the draft RTS on ESEF on 25 September 2015.

The feedback received on the CP was analysed and summarised in a Feedback Statement published on 21 December 2016. Based on the outcome of the consultation, the Feedback Statement issued on 18 December 2017 set out the cornerstones of the RTS, which are as follows:


  • All annual financial reports shall be prepared in XHTML;
  • Where the annual financial reports contains IFRS consolidated financial statements, these shall be labelled with XBRL tags, which shall be embedded in the XHTML document using the Inline XBRL technology;
  • For the first two years, only the primary financial statements shall be mandatorily marked up; after that, the entire set of IFRS consolidated financial statements shall be marked up with XBRL tags;
  • The IFRS Taxonomy, issued by the IFRS Foundation has been specifically developed to markup IFRS financial statements in a structured electronic format. It is therefore appropriate to use the IFRS Taxonomy to markup the IFRS consolidated financial statements.
  • ESMA issued the ESEF, that is based on the IFRS taxonomy, the latest version to date was issued on 20 December 2019. However, we understand that a revised version will be issued later this year.


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Oriana Abela

Partner Capital Markets

+356 79617141

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