Permanent possibility for companies, cooperatives and associations to hold virtual meetings
Limited liability companies, limited liability housing companies, cooperatives and associations can in future hold their meetings exclusively as virtual meetings. The provision and use of a remote participation option in traditional meetings will also be facilitated and clarified. The purpose of the reform is to improve shareholders’ and members’ opportunities to participate in meetings. The President of the Republic approved the legislative amendments today.
In future, all participants will have full rights of participation during a meeting, whether it be an exclusively virtual meeting or a so-called hybrid meeting with some of the participants present at the meeting venue and some of the participants attending via remote connection.
Provisions on holding virtual meetings must be included in the articles of association or rules of the corporate entity in question. A corporate entity can decide to amend its articles of association or rules by qualified majority decision. In addition, the board of directors of a company or another corporate entity can decide to allow hybrid meetings. By majority decision, a corporate entity may decide to amend its articles of association so that the entity is obliged to provide a remote participation option with full rights of participation in its meetings. The remote participation option can be offered as of next week, if the notice of the meeting mentions the option in accordance with the amended Act.
Companies and cooperatives may also continue to provide other means of participation to their shareholders or members, such as an option of voting in advance or exercising the right to be heard in writing before or during the meeting. Associations may also continue to provide an advance voting option.
Furthermore, during the current year, listed companies may decide on making the amendment enabling virtual meetings to their articles of association so that only advance voting is conducted on the proposed decision.
The Acts will enter into force next week, on 11 July.
Inquiries: Jyrki Jauhiainen, Senior Ministerial Adviser, tel. +358 29 515 0074, [email protected]
Government.fi/decisions (in Finnish)