RobecoSAM’s Country Sustainability Ranking is an effort to help integrate sustainability concerns into a range of asset classes. This is to be a complement to traditional sovereign risk assessment – giving a more comprehensive picture.

Previous reports and statistics have shown to be able to provide early warnings. In the case of Ireland and their crisis the ESG country rating started declining well before capital market ratings.

Countries’ rating is compiled by three perspectives, environmental, social and governance issues with associated indicators and sub-indicators. Examples of sub-indicators are emissions, biodiversity, education, life expectancy and corruption level.

Advanced economies score significantly better than emerging markets on all Governance and Social indicators, except for aging. Within the Environmental dimension, developed markets show a stronger score only for the environmental status indicator, whereas all country groups score closely together in the area of energy.

The country in the top is actually Sweden, much thanks to strong environment protection as well as strong institutions – this should make it more attractive to invest in.