Australian government proposes more amendments to remuneration disclosure regulations
17/11/2014
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On 17 November the Australian government released proposed amendments to remuneration disclosure regulations for listed companies. The amendments correct problems with prior amendments. They focus on:

limiting disclosure to equities that relate to the disclosing entity to remove the unintended burden of requiring disclosure on all equity holdings and ensuring that disclosures relate to the disclosing entity rather than the issuing entity;
requiring consistent disclosure by classes of equity instruments in order to increase the usefulness of the information. The current regulation requires this only for options and rights;
clarifying the scope of disclosures in relation to limited-recourse loans to make these consistent with accounting practices; and
minor amendments to ensure consistency between these provisions and existing reporting requirements.

Submissions on the proposed changes are required by 5 pm on 15 December 2014.

On balance, the clean-up in wording, and consistency in treatment of equity instruments should ensure more uniform reporting of different styles of equity grants. For a small proportion of board remuneration committees, the changes will make the disclosures of the disclosing entity more relevant.

The detail on the proposed changes to the Regulations can be found HERE.

Note, too, that the Corporations Legislation Amendment (Deregulatory and Other Measures) Bill 2014, introduced into Parliament on 22 October, has omitted the requirement included in the earlier Exposure Draft for a general description of a company’s remuneration governance framework to be included in the remuneration report (see HERE for our comments on the original proposals and HERE for our submission on these). Despite this, most large companies this AGM season have made such a disclosure.

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