- Dozens of Companies in Slovakia Are Required to Disclose Information about Their Corporate Responsibility
Dozens of Companies in Slovakia Are Required to Disclose Information about Their Corporate Responsibility
EU Directive on disclosure of non-financial and diversity information: What is it going to be like in Slovakia?
In 2015, the National Council of the Slovak Republic passed an amendment to Act No. 431 / 2002 on Accounting, as amended (hereinafter referred to as “the Act on Accounting”), which introduced a new obligation for companies to disclose information from the area of Corporate Social Responsibility and diversity policies in their annual report.
The Area of CSR
The content of the information from the area of Corporate Social Responsibility is determined by mandatory provisions in the Act on Accounting. Some companies include this required information in a report known as the CSR report. The amendment of this law is based on the EU Directive** on disclosure of non-financial and diversity information. The disclosure of information about non-financial performance of companies is important in order to change the mindsets of the companies and to help them understand the responsibility of companies for social and environmental impacts as well as the compliance with human rights and fight against corruption. The disclosure of non-financial information helps measure, monitor and control the behaviour of companies and their impact on society. Such a report contains information which can help us understand the development, behaviour and impact of company activities on the environment, employees, customers, suppliers or other partners – company stakeholders.
According to the amended Act on Accounting, the obligation concerns those public interest companies which average number of employees exceeds 500. This means that the obligation concerns certain banks, insurance companies, health insurance companies, management companies or even pension fund management companies. This obligation also concerns companies which have issued securities that have been accepted for trade on the regulated market of any EU member state.
The Area of Diversity
Certain companies have additional obligations. Diversity reporting concerns companies which have issued securities that have been accepted for trade on the regulated market of any EU member state and which also meet at least two of the following requirements: the total value of their assets is more than 20 million euros, their net turnover exceeds 40 million euros or they have more than 250 employees. The annual reports of these companies must also include a description of the diversity policies that they apply in their administrative, management and supervisory bodies, especially in regard to age, sex, education and professional experience of the members of these bodies, the aims of these policies, the way they are executed and the results achieved in the reported period. The new requirement would apply to approximately 18,000 companies in the EU, out of which several dozen are located in Slovakia.
Authors: Tatiana Čaplová, Radka Jurčáková (Pontis Foundation)