BusinessCompany NewsHiggs snaps back at changes to proposals

Higgs snaps back at changes to proposals

A complete overhaul of the controversial Higgs proposals would signal to investors a resistance to change in UK boardrooms, warns the author of the measures, Derek Higgs.

Link: The Higgs report

Writing in Accountancy Age this week, Higgs said: ‘Extensive revision to the proposals would signal to the government, investors and a public that needs badly to rebuild its confidence in the corporate sector, that resistance to change and complacency remain a worrying aspect of boardroom culture in the UK.’

The Higgs’ recommendations to strengthen UK corporate governance, currently under review by the Financial Reporting Council, have come under severe attack from company directors, lawyers, industry bodies, as well as some accountants since they were published in January.

But he said: ‘The reaction from some quarters to proposals that are common sense best practice already found in the best companies, simply confirms to me the value in updating a voluntary code.’

Higgs did, however, acknowledge that one controversial proposal – that the chairman of a board should not automatically chair the nomination committee – could be dropped. But he said the rest ‘should stand’.

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