By Olawunmi Ashafa
Lagos – The Financial Reporting Council of Nigeria (FRCN) says the final review of the National Code of Corporate Governance (NCCG) will help to boost investors’ confidence in the economy.
It said that the review of the code would also boost trade and investment in the country.
Its Chairman, Board of Governing Council, Mr Adetoun Sulaiman, expressed the optimism in an interview with the News Agency of Nigeria (NAN) on the sideline of the inauguration ceremony of the technical committee for NCCG in Lagos.
Sulaiman said the review of the NCCG would pave way for a new code by the end of the year.
He said that the committee, tasked with the responsibilities of review, reinsurance of NCCG and conducting a post-implementation review of IFRS adoption, would first focus on sectors and institutions.
“It is only logical, therefore ,that we introduce and adopt rules and regulations that strengthen the operating environment, create a more enabling and supportive environment for investment.
“The environment also protects the interest of investors while promoting the ease of doing business in Nigeria and making the country a more attractive destination for industry, trade and investments.”
Sulaiman said that the review of NCCG would also be in three phases of corporate governance, public sector and the Non-Profit Organisation (NGO).
He said that the different inputs expected by the committee in the review of the NCCG was in recognition that most companies had their own separate codes.
Sulaiman urged the committee to ensure that an exposure draft of the code would be released within the first quarter of the year in order to allow more contributions from stakeholders.
He also said that the committee was expected to focus first on corporate institutions in order to capture a cross section of the economy.
The chairman said doing so would have captured all the key players in the economy.
“This first phase will cover what we call public interest entities. So, we are going to allow the committee to define what a public entity is.
“If we do that the issue around SMEs and non-profits will be reduced and there will not be too much contention,” he said.
The Executive Secretary of FRC, Mr Daniel Asakpokhai, said that the committee, with the diversity of members, reflected the council’s commitments to working with all stakeholders on the journey to the new NCCG.
Asakpokhai urged the committee to help address the procedural and substantive concerns that led to the suspension of the earlier released code in 2016.
He thanked the International Finance Corporation(IFC) and others that had pledged to support the work of the committee, adding that the council looked forward to more stakeholders for support.
The Chairman of the Technical Committee, Alhaji Muhammad Ahmad, said the committee would rely on high standards, transparency and trust.
Ahmad, a former Director-General of Pension Commission (PENCOM), said that the committee would ensure extensive consultation and proper participation of stakeholders.
NAN recalls that the NCCG was issued by FRC on Oct.17,2016 but was suspended by the Federal Government on Oct.28, 2016 following expression of concerns and reservations by cross section of the business and nonprofit community.