Financial Reporting Bill passes first reading

A Bill that removes the requirement for smaller companies to produce complex financial statements has passed its first reading in Parliament.

The Financial Reporting Bill allows shareholders of small and medium sized companies to decide whether the company must prepare financial statements says Commerce Minister Craig Foss.

"More than half a million companies are registered in New Zealand and all of them are currently required to prepare financial statements.

"This Bill will remove expensive and unnecessary reporting obligations. Small and medium-sized companies will then be able to direct resources where the need is greatest - growing their business," says Mr Foss.

The Bill will also improve the quality of financial reporting by charities and allow the External Reporting Board to issue accounting standards for registered charities.

"The Bill will clarify what is expected of charities, improve the quality of financial reporting and allow easier comparisons between charities," says Mr Foss.

The Financial Reporting Bill has been referred to the Commerce Select Committee.

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