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Policymakers must return to the principles of business law as they navigate Brexit


18 Apr 2017


Euro & Finance
UK in Europe

As UK policymakers begin to detach laws and regulations from those of the European Union, ACCA (the Association of Chartered Certified Accountants) has published guidance on the key principles on which business law must be based.

According to ACCA’s Four tenets of business law, released today, these are:

  • Simplicity: business structures and the laws setting them out should be defined in scope and easy to understand and explain.
  • Openness and transparency: government should be open and transparent with businesses when designing and implementing business law. The government should give key indications of the direction it wants to steer businesses in so that a business can plan for the long term and stability is encouraged.
  • Fairness: business law should be fair between businesses and between business and society. Governments should be ready to step in if the exploitation of competitive advantage becomes an abuse. Governments must also ensure that they themselves do not implement rules that discriminate unfairly against businesses from other jurisdictions.
  • Accountability: businesses should be prepared and able to explain their strategies to stakeholders.

‘The legal framework in which a country’s businesses operate has a huge impact on its economy, growth and attractiveness,’ said Jason Piper, senior manager – tax and business law at ACCA.

‘The detachment of the United Kingdom from the European Union brings both challenges and opportunities. We have the opportunity to revisit our fundamental laws and regulations to ensure that they are fit for purpose and give UK businesses the right conditions to succeed and grow.’

‘However, it is also a good time to return to the tenets of business law and ensure that we are constructing a long-term system that is workable, accountable and fair, both within the UK and for the rest of the world.’

ACCA’s Tenets of Business Law are available here.


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Adele Gilbert, ACCA Newsroom

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Notes to Editors


About ACCA

ACCA (the Association of Chartered Certified Accountants) is the global body for professional accountants. It offers business-relevant, first-choice qualifications to people of application, ability and ambition around the world who seek a rewarding career in accountancy, finance and management.

ACCA supports its 188,000 members and 480,000 students in 178 countries, helping them to develop successful careers in accounting and business, with the skills required by employers. ACCA works through a network of 100 offices and centres and more than 7,110 Approved Employers worldwide, who provide high standards of employee learning and development. Through its public interest remit, ACCA promotes appropriate regulation of accounting and conducts relevant research to ensure accountancy continues to grow in reputation and influence.

Founded in 1904, ACCA has consistently held unique core values: opportunity, diversity, innovation, integrity and accountability. It believes that accountants bring value to economies in all stages of development and seek to develop capacity in the profession and encourage the adoption of global standards. ACCA’s core values are aligned to the needs of employers in all sectors and it ensures that through its range of qualifications, it prepares accountants for business. ACCA seeks to open up the profession to people of all backgrounds and remove artificial barriers, innovating its qualifications and delivery to meet the diverse needs of trainee professionals and their employers. More information is here:


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