Independent Limited Assurance Statement to the Management and Directors of Wesfarmers Limited
Ernst & Young was engaged by Wesfarmers Limited (‘Wesfarmers’) to undertake limited assurance, as defined by Australian Auditing Standards and hereafter referred to as a ‘review’, over selected disclosures (‘selected sustainability and Indigenous affairs disclosures’) published in the Wesfarmers 2021 Annual Report, the Wesfarmers sustainability website and Wesfarmers’ Modern Slavery Statement 2021 for the financial year ended 30 June 2021. Based on our review, nothing came to our attention that causes us to believe that the subject matter for our review has not been prepared and presented fairly, in all material respects, in accordance with the criteria defined below.
What our review covered (subject matter)
Ernst & Young (‘EY’ or ‘we’) reviewed:
- Wesfarmers’ approach to defining report content (‘materiality assessment’)
- Wesfarmers’ reported alignment to ‘core’ level of ‘in accordance’ requirements of the Global Reporting Initiative’s (GRI) Sustainability Reporting Standards (‘GRI Standards’)
- Wesfarmers’ Modern Slavery Statement 2021
- Selected sustainability and Indigenous affairs disclosures in the Annual Report, limited to the following:
- ‘Group Sustainability Performance’ and ‘Climate-related financial disclosures’ sections of the Operating and Financial Review
- The divisional sections for Bunnings (pp 28-30), Kmart Group (pp35-37), Officeworks (pp 42-44), Chemicals, Energy and Fertilisers (pp 48-50), and Industrial and Safety (pp 54-56).
- Selected sustainability and Indigenous affairs disclosures, including the performance metrics set out in the table below, presented on Wesfarmers’ website under wesfarmers.com.au/sustainability as at 26 August 2021.
|Scope 1, Scope 2, and Scope 3 greenhouse gas emissions in tonnes of carbon dioxide equivalent (ktCO2e)|
|Waste disposed and recovered in kilotonnes (kt)|
|Water consumption in megalitres (ML)|
|Energy consumption in petajoules (PJ)|
|Workplace health and safety data (Total Recordable Injury Frequency Rate (TRIFR) and workers compensation claims)|
|Community contributions (AUD)|
|Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander employee numbers|
|Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander procurement spend (AUD)|
|Ethical sourcing audit program data|
|Employment and People data|
In preparing its sustainability and Indigenous affairs disclosures, Wesfarmers applied the following criteria:
- GRI Standards, including the Reporting Principles for defining report quality and content
- National Greenhouse and Energy Reporting Act 2007 for Scope 1 and 2 greenhouse gas data
- GHG Protocol guidance for Scope 3 greenhouse gas data and Scope 2 market-based emissions
- Other selected Criteria, as determined by Wesfarmers, and as set out in its sustainability disclosures.
EY’s responsibility and independence
Our responsibility was to express a conclusion on the selected sustainability and Indigenous affairs disclosures based on our review. We were also responsible for maintaining our independence and confirm that we have met the requirements of the APES 110 Code of Ethics for Professional Accountants, including independence, and have the required competencies and experience to conduct this assurance engagement.
Wesfarmers management (‘management’) was responsible for selecting the Criteria and preparing and fairly presenting the sustainability and Indigenous affairs disclosures in accordance with that Criteria. This responsibility includes establishing and maintaining internal controls, adequate records, and making estimates that are reasonable in the circumstances.
Our approach to conducting the review
We conducted our review in accordance with the Australian Auditing and Assurance Standards Board’s Australian Standard on Assurance Engagements Other Than Audits or Reviews of Historical Financial Information (‘ASAE 3000’), Assurance Engagements on Greenhouse Gas Statements (‘ASAE 3410’), and the terms of reference for this engagement as agreed with Wesfarmers on 23 February 2021.
Summary of review procedures performed
A review consists of making enquiries, primarily of persons responsible for preparing the selected sustainability and Indigenous affairs disclosures, related information in the 2021 Annual Report and Wesfarmers’ Modern Slavery Statement 2021 and applying analytical and other review procedures. Our procedures included:
- Assessing Wesfarmers’ adherence to the GRI Standards Reporting Principles for defining report quality and report content, including the processes involved at a divisional and corporate level
- Determining whether material topics and performance issues identified during our procedures had been adequately disclosed
- Interviewing selected personnel from divisional and corporate offices, to understand the key sustainability issues related to the subject matter and processes for collecting, collating and reporting the performance data during the reporting period
- Where relevant, gaining an understanding of systems and processes for data aggregation and reporting
- Performing analytical tests and detailed substantive testing to source documentation for material qualitative and quantitative information
- Checking the accuracy of calculations performed
- Obtaining and reviewing evidence to support key assumptions in calculations and other data
- Reviewing selected management information and documentation supporting assertions made in the subject matter
- Checking that data and statements had been accurately transcribed from corporate systems and/or supporting evidence
- Reviewing the presentation of claims, case studies and data against the relevant GRI principles contained in the criteria.
We believe that the evidence obtained was sufficient and appropriate to provide a basis for our limited assurance conclusion.
Procedures performed in a limited assurance engagement vary in nature and timing from, and are less in extent than, for a reasonable assurance engagement. Consequently, the level of assurance obtained in a limited assurance engagement is substantially lower than the assurance that would have been obtained had a reasonable assurance engagement been performed. Our procedures were designed to obtain a limited level of assurance on which to base our conclusion and do not provide all the evidence that would be required to provide a reasonable level of assurance.
While we considered the effectiveness of management’s internal controls when determining the nature and extent of our procedures, our assurance engagement was not designed to provide assurance on internal controls. Our procedures did not include testing controls or performing procedures relating to checking aggregation or calculation of data within IT systems.
Use of our Assurance Statement
We disclaim any assumption of responsibility for any reliance on this assurance report to any persons other than management and the Directors of Wesfarmers, or for any purpose other than that for which it was prepared.
The extent of our review included the information available at www.wesfarmers.com.au/sustainability as at 26 August 2021. We provide no assurance over changes to the content of this web-based information after the date of this assurance statement, nor over any information available through web-links that are beyond the boundary of the selected sustainability and Indigenous affairs disclosures and related information in the 2021 Annual Report and Wesfarmers’ Modern Slavery Statement 2021.
Ernst & Young
Terence Jeyaretnam FIEAust
26 August 2021