The SEC granted relief from a Sarbanes-Oxley Act section 404(b) auditor attestation requirement to foreign private issuers that are accelerated filers (but not large accelerated filers) that file their annual reports on forms 20-F or 40-F ( www.sec.gov/news/press/2006/2006-136.htm ). They will not have to comply with the section 404(b) requirement to provide an auditor’s attestation report on internal control over financial reporting in their annual reports until fiscal years ending on or after July 15, 2007. They need comply only with the requirement to include management’s report in the annual report filed for their first fiscal year ending on or after July 15, 2006. The extension became effective on September 14, 2006.
The SEC amended its rules requiring disclosure of executive and director compensation, related person transactions, director independence and other corporate governance matters and security ownership of officers and directors. Under the new provisions disclosure documents will report a single figure—representing total annual compensation—for each executive to whom they refer. These changes affect proxy statements and annual reports and registration statements, as well as the current reporting of compensation arrangements, and require that most of this disclosure be provided in plain English. More information on these provisions and their effective dates is available at www.sec.gov/news/press/2006/2006-123.htm .