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Directors' duties to stakeholders : a reform proposal based on three false assumptions
journal contributionposted on 2005-01-01, 00:00 authored by J McConvill
The Corporations and Markets Advisory Committee has been asked to consider whether the duties of directors under the Corporations Act 2001 (Cth) should be broadened to require directors to take into account the interests of stakeholder groups other than shareholders when making corporate decisions. In this article, the author argues that the existing statutory duties of directors in Australia should remain unchanged. The existing duties of directors, in particular the overriding duty of directors to act in the best interests of the company, already accommodates consideration of stakeholder interests by directors if the decision is justifiable as being in the company's best interests. Furthermore, corporate culture and norms are moving towards embracing stakeholder engagement, again with the implicit recognition that integrating stakeholder considerations within the decision-making processes of companies is integral to achieving long-term sustainable growth.