The Government has roped in accounting and auditing rule-maker Institute of Chartered Accountants of India (ICAI) to help public sector companies improve their corporate governance track record. ICAI will now regularly conduct workshops for chartered accountants at senior positions in public sector units and will closely monitor the effectiveness of the training. The regulator will ensure the quality of education of key officials and board members.
The idea is to inculcate the spirit of good corporate governance in officials, even though there are many systemic issues to be addressed before public sector companies can improve their performance.
The current initiative is to train officials on various aspects of corporate governance on a continued basis, said an ICAI official. The government feels keeping senior officials of PSUs abreast of the best governance practices will ensure that the companies do not receive flak on account of wrong decisions.
ICAI will also be helping the department of public enterprises (DPE), the nodal department which oversees functioning of public sector enterprises, in updating the corporate governance norms. A DPE official said all public sector enterprises had submitted a progress report on implementation of corporate governance norms released in June 2007.
In January, the ministry of heavy industries also tied up with the accounting regulator to conduct a workshop on International Financial Reporting Standards, which was attended by CEOs, CFOs and senior officials of leading PSUs. IFRS is a new accounting format which will become mandatory for Indian companies from April 2011.