Priorities for change

ResultsIn the last issue of The Boardroom Report, we asked members to give us their views on the issues that should drive a national reform agenda. Our poll of members revealed a number of views that will help us form the positions that we will take to a national reform summit that we are attending on August 26.The summit has been jointly convened by The Australian Financial Review and The Australian newspapers.

The Australian Institute of Company Directors will be among 80 organisations in attendance; others include the Australian Council of Trade Unions, the Australian Council of Social Service, the Business Council of Australia and the Australian Youth Affairs Council.

Our poll found that AICD members believe that partisan politics, short-termism and lack of political leadership are the biggest impediments to better public policy outcomes in Australia.

Our bi-annual Director Sentiment Index had previously told us that directors believe infrastructure investment is too low, and we now know from our latest poll that telecommunications, urban transport and regional roads and rail are the areas that directors believe require the most funding. Indeed, the poll tells us that directors are adamant that an agreed pipeline of infrastructure projects is a priority for the nation.

The poll results again indicate a strong desire for tax reform – it was ranked as the number one priority for boosting productivity growth. Simplification of the tax system and social equity were identified as the two primary factors that should drive broad reform of the tax system.

We will keep members informed of the outcomes of the national reform summit, and any subsequent developments in this space to which the AICD contributes.