Bill to bring legislation in line with modern business practices drawn
Waimakariri MP Matt Doocey has welcomed his Companies (Annual Report Notice Requirements) Amendment Bill being drawn from the ballot today.
The bill seeks to replace an outdated legal requirement for companies to send hard copies of their annual report to shareholders with a requirement for companies to ensure the report is available on their websites.
“My bill not only reduces costs for companies but will also be beneficial to the environment by reducing the amount of paper that is being used for companies’ reports,” says Mr Doocey.
“The digital age has changed how we do business and we need our legislation to keep pace with these changes.
“I’m told that Computershare estimate the companies they represent will save in excess of $300,000 on printing, postage, and man hours thanks to this bill by eliminating about 100 boxes of A4 copy paper worth of waste.
“One company in my electorate told me it sends out around 32,000 letters every year and gets on average 100 requests for a hard copy of the report. With technology, we can do more online and companies have the ability to make their annual report available online.
“Section 209 of the Companies Act 1993 was intended to ensure shareholders had access to information. Today, however, digital communication is the primary means by which investors obtain information in listed companies so the intention of the original act is no longer necessary.”
“I’ve also been encouraged by the support I’ve received from NZ Initiative, Chorus, and the NZ Shareholders Association, amongst others, during consultation on this bill.
“The National-led Government is focused on reducing cumbersome and unnecessary rules to make doing business in our communities easier; this bill does just that,” says Mr Doocey.
Members’ Bills, which are drawn from the ballot, are debated by Parliament every second Wednesday the House sits.