Directive 2006/46/EC aims to update certain aspects of company law, to enhance corporate governance and to promote confidence in financial statements and annual reports published by companies in the EU while also limiting disclosure obligations on small and medium sized businesses. The DETE had previously indicated that the implementation date of the Directive would be 18 September 2009 but this has now been pushed back to some time next month.

This Directive will require public companies whose shares are admitted to trading on a regulated market in the EU (in Ireland this is the Main Market of the ISE), to produce a corporate governance statement. Although the information required is already produced by plcs, the requirement to collate this into one document is new. In addition, collective responsibility on the part of directors for ensuring that the company accounts etc have been prepared in line with the Directive is placed on a statutory footing. The Directive also includes various changes to reporting requirements and the thresholds for small and medium-sized companies, which are subject to less onerous obligations, are increased.