ICAEW gives qualified welcome to narrative reporting plans

THE BUSINESS DEPARTMENT’S plans for companies to provide a “concise, standalone” report on strategy and business model – replacing the business review – have received a qualified welcome from the ICAEW.

The department for Business, Innovation and Skills, headed by Vince Cable (pictured), has announced plans for a standalone report to provide clear narrative reporting to stakeholders, a move described as “sensible” by ICAEW financial reporting faculty head Nigel Sleigh-Johnson.

But the institute is less impressed by BIS’ plans to introduce gender reporting within the document.

“We support better communication on board diversity and welcome the proposed disclosures on gender. However, we continue to question whether the strategic report is the best repository for this type of disclosure,” said Sleigh-Johnson.

The legislation will come into force in October 2013 at the same time as changes to voting and reporting on pay.

The new law is in tandem with the Financial Reporting Council’s consultation on providing guidance to companies on producing better, more useful narrative information.

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