Nigeria sets the stage to attract more investments into the country through the establishment of the Nigeria Integrated Reporting Committee (NIRCO). The establishment of NIRCO complements the efforts of the Federal Government to align GDP growth with the Sustainable Development Agenda, as envisaged by initiatives like the National Social Investment Program. By adopting Integrated Reporting, companies will align their Financial (IFRS) and Sustainability Reporting to enhance decision making by investors and business executives.
Championed by the Institute of Chartered Accountants of Nigeria (ICAN), NIRCO will serve as an influential Committee that will promote and support the adoption of Integrated Reporting in Nigeria and West Africa. Integrated Reporting has been recognised by International Federation of Accountants, the World Bank, International Monetary Fund and other multilateral agencies as the future of Corporate reporting.
NIRCO membership is multi-sectoral and comprises representatives from the Financial Reporting Council (FRCN), Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC), The Nigerian Stock Exchange (NSE), Central Bank of Nigeria (CBN), Nigeria Deposit Insurance Corporation (NDIC), National Pension Commission (PenCom), National Insurance Commission (NAICOM), Corporate Affairs Commission (CAC), KPMG, Deloitte, Ernst & Young, PricewaterhouseCoopers, Dangote Industries Limited and the Private Sector Advisory Group on SDGs.
Speaking during the inauguration of the Committee, the President of the Institute of Chartered Accountants of Nigeria, Mazi Nnamdi Okwuadigbo said: “with this development, Nigeria has joined other visionary countries that can see the future of corporate reporting.”
Also speaking during the inauguration, World Bank Representative, Patrick Kabuya, said that “Integrated Reporting will be a paradigm shift of thinking by boards and management on their business models, strategy and operations to mindfully incorporate the three dimensions of sustainable development: people, planet and profit, considering all capitals in long-term value creation.”
Dr Iheanyi Anyahara, Deputy Director, Strategy & Research, of the Financial Reporting Council of Nigeria stated that “FRCN supports the initiative of the Nigeria Integrated Reporting Committee because it will result in better and more comprehensive corporate reports, with improved accountability, sustainability and governance.”
Godstime Iwenekhai, Head of Listings regulation at The Nigerian Stock Exchange said; “We believe that with the birth of the NIRCO companies listing on the Exchange will be encouraged to embrace the initiative and thereby add value to investors and other stakeholders. We will work with the committee to ensure that companies listed on the Exchange embrace this initiative.”
The National Pension Commission (PenCom), represented by Inuwa Iyodo, commended the Initiative which he said “would boost the confidence of stakeholders and enhance the scope of investment windows due to the improved risk management and sustainability of corporate entities that will arise from the introduction of integrated reporting.”
Representing the Private Sector, the Co-Chair of the Private Sector Advisory Group on SDGs, Dr Ndidi Nnoli commended the introduction of integrated reporting on a voluntary basis and the inclusion of the private sector as a key stakeholder in defining the roadmap towards mainstreaming sustainability as core to business management and reporting.
Mrs Akindele, Deputy Director in Financial Services and Corporate Governance, Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC) said that “By adopting Integrated Thinking and Reporting, companies would be able to attract more investment, because all disclosures necessary would have been made in their financial reports.”
Corporate Affairs Commission, Assistant Director, Final Accounts, Mrs Tola Akinto said: “Integrated Reports will give a better picture of the value we generate for the society, beyond just financial returns.”
The Chairman of NIRC Dr Innocent Okwuosa, an ICAN Council member is of the opinion that one of the strategic visions of PAFA/ AIRC have been achieved and Nigeria will be better for it.
The formation of NIRCO can be traced to PAFA who, working with the World Bank decided to establish and operate the Africa Integrated Reporting Committee (AIRC), whose purpose is to serve as an influential Committee that will promote and support the adoption of IR in Africa. AIRC is comprised of influential policy-makers from countries that have Stock Exchanges in Africa and based on their desire to attract more investment). PAFA shall extend invitations to the target member countries via the respective country PAO. The initial countries are:
· South Africa
Membership cuts across constituent bodies/individuals: a Stock Exchange or Capital Market regulator and Professional Accountancy Organisation (PAO).