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2009 Code to be reviewed in 2017
On 21 November 2016, the chairman of the Corporate Governance Committee, Thomas Leysen, announced that in 2017 it will review the 2009 Belgian Code on Corporate Governance. After all, the Committee is tasked with ensuring that the provisions of the Belgian Code on Corporate Governance remain relevant to listed companies and are regularly updated on the basis of actual practice, legislation and international standards.
The decision was prompted by several considerations, one being the introduction of new regulations, at both national and European level. Secondly, Belgium is currently reviewing its Companies Code. It is of the utmost importance for listed companies to have compatible reference frameworks. Consequently, in consultation with the staff of Justice Minister Koen Geens, the Committee will endeavour to time the review of the 2009 Code to coincide, as far as possible, with the revision of the Companies Code. However, the Code will also have to take account of interesting international trends and best practices. For instance, there is a trend towards relying more on the behaviour of the members of the Board and of the executive management as well as on the corporate culture and the culture within the Board of Directors in particular.
The Committee intends to focus on a clearly readable Code that is suitable for any type of listed company, regardless of its size, its governance model or its shareholder structure. "It is important that the Code regains its added value and is not just viewed by the listed companies as an exercise in compliance", said Committee Chairman Thomas Leysen.