Original URL: http://www.theregister.co.uk/2004/09/08/companies_bill_it_costs/

UK corporate governance bill to cost millions

IT upgrades all round

By John Leyden

Posted in CIO, 8th September 2004 13:59 GMT

UK government plans to improve corporate governance will cost companies millions, a UK technology analyst firm claims.

The Butler Group says that firms will have to spend heavily to ensure that there computer systems comply with the Companies (Audit, Investigations and Community Enterprise) Bill. This Bill is the UK equivalent of the US's Sarbanes-Oxley Act and it addresses shortcomings highlighted by auditing scandals such as Shell, Parmalat and Enron. In essence, it deals with accounting practices, with particular attention paid to auditing processes.

Mike Davis, senior research analyst at Butler Group, said: "While the UK has always had better auditing standards than the US, the Companies Bill tightens these up still further. However, as with Sarbanes-Oxley, the only efficient and cost-effective way for UK businesses to meet the Companies Bill requirements will be through the investment in certain key technologies. Failure to make these investments quickly and correctly will leave UK businesses prone to severe financial penalties."

Butler Group has produced a list of key technologies needed to meet Companies Bill requirements:

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