Voluntary corporate governance disclosures by post‐Apartheid South African corporations

Collins G. Ntim (Accounting and Finance, Business School, University of Glasgow, Glasgow, UK)
Kwaku K. Opong (Accounting and Finance, Business School, University of Glasgow, Glasgow, UK)
Jo Danbolt (Accounting and Finance, Business School, University of Glasgow, Glasgow, UK)
Dennis A. Thomas (School of Management and Business, Aberystwyth University, Aberystwyth, UK)

Journal of Applied Accounting Research

ISSN: 0967-5426

Publication date: 7 September 2012



The purpose of this paper is to investigate as to whether post‐Apartheid South African (SA) listed corporations voluntarily comply with and disclose recommended good corporate governance (CG) practices and, if so, the major factors that influence such voluntary CG disclosure behaviour.


The paper constructs a broad voluntary CG disclosure index containing 50 CG provisions from the 2002 King Report using a sample of 169 SA listed corporations from 2002 to 2006. The authors also conduct regression analysis to identify the main drivers of voluntary CG disclosure.


The results suggest that while compliance with, and disclosure of, good CG practices varies substantially among the sampled companies, CG standards have generally improved over the five‐year period examined. The authors also find that block ownership is negatively associated with voluntary CG disclosure, while board size, audit firm size, cross‐listing, the presence of a CG committee, government ownership and institutional ownership are positively related to voluntary CG disclosure.

Practical implications

These findings have important implications for policy‐makers and regulators. Evidence of improving CG standards implies that efforts by various stakeholders at improving CG standards in SA companies have had some positive impact on CG practices of SA firms. However, the substantial variation in the levels of compliance implies that enforcement may need to be strengthened further.


There is a dearth of evidence on the level of compliance with the King Report. This study fills this gap by providing evidence for the first time on the level of compliance achieved, as well as contributing generally to the literature on compliance with codes of good governance and voluntary disclosure.



Ntim, C., Opong, K., Danbolt, J. and Thomas, D. (2012), "Voluntary corporate governance disclosures by post‐Apartheid South African corporations", Journal of Applied Accounting Research, Vol. 13 No. 2, pp. 122-144. https://doi.org/10.1108/09675421211254830

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