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The National Institute of Directors of Côte d’Ivoire (Institut national des administrateurs de Côte d’Ivoire – INAD-CI) was set up in April 2013 by a group of corporate executives and professional organisations to encourage and promote good governance in Ivorian companies and help company directors with their professional development.

This article is an excerpt from Issue 30 : Corporate governance

INAD-CI’s brief includes providing information and training to its members, acting as a forum for exchanging experiences and promoting good corporate governance practices, forging links with public authorities and all bodies concerned with the activities of corporate directors, and creating talent pools of independent directors through a corporate director certification programme (CAS).

Members may avail of a number of platforms and training programmes – INAD-CI Formation (training) and INAD-CI Performance Class – to get up to speed with the duties and responsibilities of corporate officers, analysing financial data, handling communication techniques, devising and implementing corporate strategy, managing human resources and deploying a CSR policy. The Institute equips them with the basics needed to exercise the function of a director and helps members forge a solid skills foundation. It has already held around 100 training sessions since it was set up.

Persistent shortcomings in corporate governance

For the INAD-CI, which is a member of the African Corporate Governance Network, (ACGN), the focus is on meeting the governance challenges faced by Côte d’Ivoire businesses. In spite of the publication of a Corporate Governance Code in 2010 by stakeholders in the sector under the auspices of the Budget Ministry inter alia, many Ivorian businesses continue to suffer from major deficiencies in terms of good governance. These can mainly be traced back to their respective governance bodies, i.e., the Board of Directors and Executive Management.

Aside from ignorance of basic governance principles by certain key actors, the persistence of a permissive environment conducive to corruption also saps the vitality of businesses and – by extension – the entire national economic fabric.

Organisation

INAD-CI wishes to establish itself as an essential part of improving corporate governance in Côte d’Ivoire. As a means to this end, six commissions have been set up to carry out the Institute’s work: ethics and admission to trading; training and capacity-building; research and prospective studies; gender balance; international relations and strategic partnerships; legal affairs.

The Institute has also forged strategic partnerships with various specialised structures such as the Moroccan Institute of Directors (IMA), the Regional Stock Exchange (BRVM) and Société financière internationale (SFI). It is also a party to the tripartite agreement signed in 2017 with the Directorate General of Government Portfolio Investments (Direction générale du Portefeuille de l’Etat) and the Ivorian Association of Chartered Accountants (Ordre des experts comptables de Côte d’Ivoire)