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King to chair a committee on corporate governance. He viewed this as an opportunity to educate the newly democratic South African public on the working of a free economy. Approach[ edit ] Unlike other corporate governance codes such as Sarbanes-Oxley, the code is non-legislative and is based on principles and practices.
It also espouses an apply or explain approach, unique to the Netherlands until King and now also found in the Combined Code from the United Kingdom. The philosophy of the code consists of the three key elements of leadership, sustainability and good corporate citizenship.
It views good governance as essentially being effective, ethical leadership. King believes that leaders should direct the company to achieve sustainable economic, social and environmental performance. It views sustainability as the primary moral and economic imperative of this century; the code's view on corporate citizenship flows from a company's standing as a juristic person under the South African constitution and should operate in a sustainable manner.
It established recommended standards of conduct for boards and directors of listed companies, banks, and certain state-owned enterprises. It included not only financial and regulatory aspects, but also advocated an integrated approach that involved all stakeholders.
It defined "large" as companies with shareholder equity over R50 million, but encouraged all companies to adopt the code. The key principles from the first King report covered: In addition to those types of organizations listed in King I, it was applicable to departments of State or national, provincial or local government administration falling under the Local Government: Municipal Finance Management Act, and public institution or functionary exercising a power or performing a function in terms of the constitution, or exercising a public power or performing a public function in terms of any legislation, excluding courts or judicial officers.
As before, it encourages all companies to adopt the applicable principles from the code. Directors and their responsibility.History.
In July the Institute of Directors in South Africa asked retired Supreme Court of South Africa judge Mervyn E. King to chair a committee on corporate governance.
He viewed this as an opportunity to educate the newly democratic South African public on the working of a free economy. The committee's report was to be the first report of its kind in South Africa.
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