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Wates guidelines launched by financial watchdog

The Financial Reporting Council has launched a set of corporate governance guidelines, which have been drawn up by Wates Group chairman James Wates.

The guidelines are designed to ensure large companies have strong corporate governance principles in place ahead of new financial reporting requirements.

For accounting years starting from 1 January 2019, all companies with more than 2,000 employees or £200m in turnover and a balance sheet over £2bn will have to explain their governance approach in their annual accounts.

The Wates Principles have been designed as a framework that such companies use to assess their current governance approach and consider changes that might be needed.

Mr Wates said: “I believe that good business, well done, is a force for good in society.

“The Wates Corporate Governance Principles are a tool for large private companies that helps them look at themselves in the mirror, to see where they’ve done well, and where they can raise their corporate governance standards to a higher level.”

Six areas are covered by the principles, including: purpose and leadership, board composition, director responsibilities, opportunity and risk, remuneration, and stakeholder relationships and engagement.

Mr Wates worked with other organisations, including Osborne, from the construction sector while drawing up the principles.

He was drafted in by business secretary Greg Clark in January this year to draw up the guidelines.

This came after a government report in April 2017 said large private companies should be more transparent and accountable given the large effect they can have on society.

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