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This year at the World Economic Forum (WEF) in Davos (a gathering not known for championing the small guy), a white paper was tabled that could help SA focus some attention in that direction. The paper, titled “Toward Common Metrics and Consistent Reporting of Sustainable Value Creation”, lays out new proposals for the way companies disclose their behaviour in society. The metrics are a gentle attempt to steer the big guys away from shareholder capitalism towards stakeholder capitalism.

While the Small Business Institute and our member constituents object to the burden of unnecessary regulations and the time it takes to comply with them (which inevitably affects small businesses disproportionately), we see an opportunity here. If disclosure guidelines are under review, it’s time that we mirror what is happening in other jurisdictions and ensure that businesses governed by the Companies Act disclose the time it takes them to pay small businesses in their supply chains...

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