In a green paper issued on 29 November 2016, the Government airs ideas for improving corporate governance. These include:
- strengthening the corporate governance framework for the UK’s largest privately-held companies [NB the scope of this, suggested in the green paper, includes large mutuals & co-operatives - the example cited is the Co-operative Group Ltd, but it could conceivably include the largest building societies. However, given that the main remedy suggested would be to extend the UK Corporate Governance Code to these companies (sic), this may prove not to be a significant issue for our sector, as societies already have regard to the UK Code.]
- which types of company need to strengthen stakeholder voices and how best the opinions of workers and customers can be better heard in the boardroom
- increasing shareholder influence over directors’ remuneration, including increasing transparency and simplifying and strengthening long-term incentive plans
Whilst much of the green paper is not of direct relevance to building societies, the BSA has responded to it, to emphasis points of differentiation between our sector and PLCs and to stress the extent to which societies are already embracing high standards of corporate governance.
Download the full response here.