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Strategy-related statutory documents

Statements of Intent, Annual Reports and Annual Financial Statements.


The board has an interest in, or responsibility for, all statutory documents. There are three strategic related documents that Crown entities are required to present on an annual basis. These are the Statement of Intent (SOI), Statement of Performance Expectations (SPE) and the Annual Reports which include the Annual Financial Statements, the Audit report and the Statements of Service Performance and Responsibility.

These documents are in the name of the board and are usually signed off by or on behalf of the board. While they have their equivalent in the private sector, the special requirements of Crown governance result in a set of documents unique to the Crown.

Statements of Intent (SOIs)

SOIs are long-term strategic statements that enable the Crown to participate in the setting of an entity’s intentions and undertakings. Set out for Parliament those intentions and undertakings provide a basis for the entity’s performance to be assessed. As strategic documents they are very much ‘owned’ by the board, and boards should ensure they are actively kept up-to-date on the development, confirmation and monitoring of the SOI. The key requirements for SOIs are set out in the appendix.

Following the principle that an SOI enables the Crown to participate in the setting of an entity’s intentions and undertakings, Ministers play an important role in the development of these documents.

Drafts of the SOI must be provided (usually in April) to the responsible Minister who may make comments which the Board must take into consideration before finalising the SOI. The final Statements of Intent for Crown Entities are then presented to Parliament by the Minister. Underlining the importance of SOIs as a key board document is the requirement that, for a Crown entity, they should be signed by two board members.

The Crown Entities Act states "The Board of a statutory entity must ensure that the entity acts in a manner consistent with its… current statement of intent”.

Statement of Performance Expectations

Introduced with Crown Entity reforms in 2014.

Annual Reports

These are signed off by two board members on behalf of the full board and must be presented to the Minister within 15 working days of the board receiving its Audit Report. The Annual Report includes Statements of Service Performance and Responsibility, the Audit Report and the Annual Financial Statements.

Strategy-related Statutory Documents - Appendix

Statements of Intent, Annual Reports and Annual Financial Statements

  • A list of the SOI requirements of the Crown Entities Act 2004 is here.
  • A background memo for board members ‘Crown Entity Annual reports-the Board’s role’ is here.
  • A MCH paper on annual report guidance under Crown Entities Act 2004 is available here.
  • A typical ‘No Surprises’ clause is here.

Updated on 7th October 2019