7 Feb 2012

New group to tackle governance issues

6:54 am on 7 February 2012

A new group, formed by some of the country's most influential and experienced company directors, plans to work together to tackle the big governance issues - and first on the list is the the threat of criminal sanctions.

The New Zealand Institute of Directors has set up a Significant Interests Group of more than 100 members, which plans to meet regularly to discuss topical issues and concerns.

Chair of the group John Palmer says recent high profile court cases and the developing regulatory framework have put directors' performance and responsibility in the spotlight.

Mr Palmer says the group aims to provide advice and guidance about the practicalities of directors' work.

He says the group has quite a wide remit, but he's made it clear he wants the group to be advocates for legislation, specifically the Financial Markets Conduct Bill.

The group's committee includes Denham Shale, Michael Stiassny, Joan Withers, Prue Flacks and John Waller.

The group is open to institute members who are non-executive directors of companies and state-owned enterprises with assets of at least $200 million or revenue of at least $100 million.

They must also sit on a board of at least four directors, of whom no fewer than two should be non-executive directors.