The clause relates to section 354 of the Companies Act 1985, which deals with the index of members. It was debated in the Lords, where Lord Hodgson proposed an amendment that only companies with more than 100 members, as opposed to the 50 currently specified in clause 114, need keep an index. He pointed out that
“Fifty is not such a large number that it requires an index. Up to 100 members...could easily be examined by an ordinary shareholder without needing an index.”
Lord Sainsbury responded that he doubted that
and that the amendment would therefore have little practical impact. To move the matter forward, I would add that Lord Sainsbury may well be right, but we still believe that the amendment would be a worthy deregulatory move, and we ask the Minister to reconsider.
For the sake of speed and trying to move us on this afternoon, I have to say that our view has not changed from the one expressed by Lord Sainsbury in the House of Lords. We think that the impact of the amendment will be minimal, and that the change is not a particularly sensible one that we ought to pursue.