After the uncertainty last month as to whether the long-awaited audit and corporate reform was going to go ahead this year, this month has been dominated by news that the Government will be pressing ahead. BEIS finally published its response to the audit and governance reforms consultation that closed in July last year. The FRC and the ICAEW have both welcomed the move which could result in a shake-up of the audit market and creation of ARGA.
In other news, the FRC has published a revised edition of the Guidance on the Strategic Report to incorporate the new climate-related financial disclosures that became effective for financial years beginning on or after 6 April 2022. A new EU Directive on improving gender balance on Boards has also been announced, interestingly using the phrase ‘underrepresented gender’ rather than ‘female’. And finally, activity in the sustainability reporting space continues to move at pace, with news that the Council and European Parliament have reached a provisional political agreement on the European Corporate Sustainability Reporting Directive. Although this new directive will not directly impact UK companies, it will impact UK groups with EU subsidiaries.