Caja Navarra opts to go down XBRL routeSeptember 2009
A Spanish bank has become the world’s first company to publish its non-financial report in a special business reporting language.
Caja Navarra has released its 2008 CSR report in XBRL – Extensible Business Reporting Language – an international format that digitally tags individual items so they can be easily exchanged between computers and compared (EP10, issue 2, p9).
The report provides data on more than 600 performance indicators, including staff, suppliers, community and the environment. It was verified by XBRL International consortium, which promotes the format.
XBRL has started to take hold in financial reporting, but Caja Navarra’s document is the first to use the format for a specific CSR report, and is also the first to appear in a new international repository for XBRL CSR reports set up by the Spanish Association of Accountancy and Business Administration for use by analysts, researchers, companies, investors, media and non-governmental organizations.
Some critics in companies have complained the language limits their freedom to express themselves, but other businesses have said that, since too much individuality in reporting detracts from the ability to use information, XBRL is a good way of procuring comparable data.
Sebastian Muriel, chairman of XBRL Spain, said: ‘XBRL is beginning to pass beyond purely quantitative or accounting information, which is hugely important because it is going to mark [Spain] as the leading country in the use of XBRL for such activities.’