Tuesday, 21 February 2012
Department of Enterprise, Trade and Innovation
Caoimhghín Ó Caoláin (Cavan-Monaghan, Sinn Fein)
Question 287: To ask the Minister for Jobs, Enterprise and Innovation the progress made towards the implementation of the commitment in the programme for Government to enact legislation to provide for binding code of practice for corporate governance, which will be obligatory for companies wishing to be listed on Irish Stock Exchange; and if he will make a statement on the matter. [9290/12]
Richard Bruton (Minister, Department of Jobs, Enterprise and Innovation; Dublin North Central, Fine Gael)
Any company that wishes to list on the Irish Stock Exchange’s main market must implement the Corporate Governance Code.
While the legal obligation to comply with the Code only applies to companies listed on the main market, the Irish Stock Exchange’s own Listing Rules require companies on the secondary market to report on how they have applied the principles of the Code or, where they have not applied those principles, to explain why.
The Corporate Governance Code is subject to regular review and updating. It was last reviewed in 2010 and new principles on gender diversity on boards are expected to be incorporated this year. At the same time, the European Commission is examining the need for EU wide measures and this may yield proposals later this year. Clearly, if these proposals are for legislation, we will be implementing them in Irish law.
Meanwhile, work is progressing on the Companies Bill, which will consolidate and reform the existing canon of company law. One novel feature of the Bill is that it will bring together into one statutory provision all the existing fiduciary duties of directors, to make them more accessible and comprehensible to all.