Simpler regulatory package impacts pay disclosures, director fee approval and unlisted company share plans

On 25 May 2007 the federal government released the Simpler Regulatory System Bill package.  The Bill will cover a range of regulatory areas such as financial services, financial reporting, takeovers, auditor independence, corporate governance and fundraising, reporting requirements for executive remuneration and fundraising requirements for employee share schemes.

Amendments will be made to harmonise and remove duplication in the executive remuneration disclosure requirements between the Corporations Act and accounting standards, without dilution of disclosure requirements.

Amendments will provide for a prescribed level for payments to related parties below which member approval is not required. This would avoid member approval of what could be considered minor transactions. The director amounts threshold will be repealed, as it will be subsumed into the threshold for related party approvals.
The amendments required for encouraging greater employee ownership of companies by removing restrictions that apply to unlisted companies wishing to establish an employee share scheme are long overdue.  They include relief from certain of the licensing and hawking restrictions of the Corporations Act for employee share schemes for unlisted companies.  This relief will be subject to the condition that such employee share schemes must be accompanied by a disclosure document such as an Offer Information Statement or a prospectus.  Listed entities may also take advantage of this relief if they wish, subject to the same condition.

The government intends for the bill to be passed during the winter session of parliament.  When we see it in writing we will advise subscribers and clients if there are any surprises!  In the meantime, you can check out the details provided by the government so far here.

© Guerdon Associates 2024
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