|Issue No 90||30 March 2001|
Beazley to Force Executive Disclosure
The Beazley Opposition has announced it will move to tighten laws governing corporate governance, which would include the disclosure of Directors salaries.
The initiative was part of the ALP's Corporate Governance policy released this week by the Leader of the Opposition Kim Beazley and Shadow Minister for Financial Services and Regulation, Senator Stephen Conroy this week.
Labor's industrial relations spokesman Arch Bevis says the announcement is good news for Australian workers.
"The increasing incidence of employee entitlements being lost when companies become insolvent has demonstrated has demonstrated the need for greater scrutiny of Directors - the disclosure of Director salaries is much needed step in this direction.
"Labor's plan is to ensure that the interests of management are aligned with the interests of shareholders. It is not in the interests of the workers or the shareholders of for companies to be placed in receivership.
"The move to make Directors more responsive to shareholders should be welcomed by Australian workers. With more and more workers owning shares, both directly and indirectly through superannuation funds, more so than ever before Australian workers are directly affected by decisions at the board level.
"In the past we have seen, company executives and directors award themselves huge salaries even when their companies perform poorly, this is because they lack accountability to their shareholders. The disclosure of information to shareholders is in the interests of better corporate management, and represents good economic policy.
"Under the Labor plan companies will be required to disclose the criteria on which management performance is assessed and remuneration increases are justified or calculated. This also requires that share options issued to directors be valued in the accounts of the company.
The Howard Government has refused to act on this issue and to enforce even the existing provisions of the Corporations Law.
Other policy initiatives include:
· measures to improve the enforcement of the continuous disclosure provisions in the Corporations Law;
· a review of ways to increase the accessibility of corporate information and increase the flow of information to retail investors;
· the prompt disclosure of details of directors' share trading and an examination of other initiatives, including trading windows, directed at ensuring a fair market and that the objectives of performance pay cannot be distorted;
· a restoration of the independence of the Australian Accounting Standards Board; and
· ensuring the independence of auditors, in line with international best practice.
"It is widely recognised that corporate governance practices in Australia need to match international best practice - this will help to protect the interest of investors and attract capital to Australia, which in turn results in job growth.
Interview: On the Up and Up
On the eve of new figures showing the slide in union membership may be bottoming out, ACTU secretary Greg Combet takes stock of the state of the movement.
Unions: Organising Theory
Labor Council’s Chris Christodoulou reports back from this week’s ACTU Organising Conference
Economics: The Failure of the Third Way
In his presentation to this week's ACTU Organising Conference, John Buchanan painted a dark picture of the emerging labour market.
History: Emblems of Unity
The Gregory J. Smith Collection of Trade Union badges was auctioned today in Sydney. Smith compiled a book on 763 of his remarkable collection which was published in 1992.
Legal: Della's Compo Plan
Labour lawyer Richard Brennan places the NSW workers compensation reforms under the microscope.
International: East Timor Goes Union
Workers in the fledgling nation have established their equivalent to the ACTU to build a safety net for workers.
Satire: Management for the Post-Industrial World
A new management fad is sweeping the post-industrial world, which has major social and political implications at the macro and micro level. We have called it "Purge Management Strategy" (PMS).
Review: Surviving The Temptations of TV Island
Cultural analyst Mark Morey rakes over the coals of American TV culture to find very little is there.
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Last Modified: 15 Nov 2005