New ASX Corporate Governance Council Recommendations on Diversity

by Mondo Visione, December 7, 2009.

The ASX Corporate Governance Council (Council) proposes to expand the Corporate Governance Principles and Recommendations to require each entity listed on the Australian Securities Exchange – on an “if not, why not?” basis – to adopt and disclose a diversity policy that includes measurable objectives relating to gender.

The proposal is contained in a communiqué about recent work activity released by the Council today.

Within their diversity policy, listed entities will be required, on an “if not, why not?” basis, to disclose in their annual report:

  • Their achievement against the gender objectives set by their board; and
  • The number of women employees in the whole organisation, in senior management and on the board.

Alongside the new recommendations, changes will be made to the guidance commentary to:

  • Encourage nomination committees of listed entities to include in their charters a requirement to continuously review the proportion of women at all levels in the company. Commentary will highlight that it is the responsibility of the nomination committee to address strategies on board gender diversity and diversity in general.
  • Require that the performance review of the board include consideration of diversity criteria in addition to skills. Also, boards will be required to disclose what skills and diversity criteria they look for in any new board appointment…(continue reading)
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